Do Yourself and the Planet A Favor - Walk

Alliance to Save Energy Helps Consumers Get Better Mileage, Lower Expenses

Published: 12-Mar-2004

WASHINGTON, March 11 /U.S. Newswire/ -- With gasoline prices nearing or reaching record levels in many states and regions of the country, the Alliance to Save Energy offers consumers tips to cut gasoline use and protect their pocketbooks:

-- Show the love -- to your vehicle. Keep your car properly tuned up, and change the air filter regularly, both to save gas and protect your engine.

-- If you own more than one vehicle, drive the one that gets better gas mileage whenever possible. Do you really need that SUV for trips to the video store?

-- Show your cool by curtailing aggressive driving. Speeding, rapid acceleration, and rapid braking all waste gas -- and curb mileage by as much as 33 percent at highway speeds, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Nix jack-rabbit starts, opting instead for slow acceleration from a dead stop.

-- Slow down! Speeding wastes gas -- and your money. Each mile per hour you drive over 60 mph is like paying an extra 10 cents per gallon, DOE says.

-- Inflate tires to the proper setting -- not only to increase fuel economy, but also to make tires safer and extend their life. Get other tips for increasing your car's operating efficiency this winter from the American Automobile Association's Web site ( ).

-- When buying a new vehicle, think high gas mileage. Check out the Department of Energy (DOE) Web site ( ) and the ACEEE Web site ( ) for information on fuel-efficient vehicles. Learn about current electric drive vehicles on the Electric Drive Transportation Association Web site ( ). And read about Toyota's award- winning hybrid Prius on the Alliance's Web site ( ).

-- Avoid "going nowhere fast." Idling gets 0 mph. Cars with larger engines typically waste even more gas at idling than cars with smaller engines.

-- Use the recommended grade of motor oil to maximize fuel economy. Look for the "Energy Conserving" label that ensures friction-reducing additives inside.

-- Combine your errands into one trip and plan your routes carefully to drive fewer miles and use less fuel.

-- If available, use your vehicle's overdrive gear when appropriate to reduce engine speed, save gas, and decrease engine wear.

-- Cruising down the highway? Use cruise control to maintain a steady speed and help cut fuel consumption.

-- Pack lightly when traveling, and avoid carrying items on your vehicle's roof.

-- Carpool and use public transportation whenever possible.

-- Get your exercise! Whenever possible, walk to your destination. You'll lose weight, save gas and the planet.

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