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Tips to Help You Save at the Gas Pump this Spring

Has the spring travel bug bitten you yet? Once the weather starts warming up, I find myself wanting to spend more time on the road, enjoying my favorite music, fresh air, and all of the gorgeous sights of spring blooms all around me. I start making travel plans and mapping out our weekend day trips or vacations, and then the realization hits me that we have to put gas in the car to get to these destinations, and oh yeah- gas costs money. With gas prices going up and down like a child's yo-yo, there's no telling what the price of gas per gallon will be like this summer.

My husband and I have been looking for ways to save at the gas pump. We have a lot of travel planned for this summer- some quick trips, and some longer ones, so we need to save all the money we can so we can enjoy our travels. Here are some of the best ways we've found to save money at the pump:

Check your tire pressure.
Did you know that your tire pressure can affect your car's overall performance, causing it to work harder, which causes it to use more gas? True story! If your car doesn't have an auto-tire pressure sensor, you can buy an inexpensive pressure gauge at any auto or convenience store, and easily check it yourself. Proper tire pressure can increase your gas mileage by 3.3%.

Oil up!
Keep motor oil flowing on a regular basis. Make sure you know how to check oil levels (it's pretty easy- even I can do this). If your levels are low, add oil (just make sure you add the right motor oil for your car). Adding motor oil can improve gas mileage by 1-2%.

Keep it capped.
Did you know that you can lose gas mileage if your gas cap is loose, damaged, or has gone missing? This is definitely something to keep an eye on. In my previous car, the gas cap was detached from the car, and I placed it on top of the car and forgot to cap after filling up. I drove off and the gas cap was never to be seen again. Luckily, I was able to get a replacement pretty quickly.

Keep your car well-maintained.
If your car isn't running smoothly, it's going to be working overtime to compensate for faulty parts. Of course, this will lower your gas mileage and cost you more in the long run at the pump. Furthermore, you could really be doing more damage to the car itself by ignoring the issue. If you can afford it, don't wait to have it looked at and receive an estimate for fixing the problem. Most dealerships won't charge for an estimate, and won't start work on a vehicle before talking to the owner and receiving permission to go ahead with the work that needs to be done on the car.

Enroll in a fuel points program.

Most gas stations have their own fuel rewards programs, and a lot of grocery store chains do, too. One of my favorites is Harris Teeter, which gives us fuel points when we make purchases for groceries. It's the easiest way ever to save money at the gas pump! Check with your favorite gas station or grocery store to see if they have a similar program available.

These are pretty much easy to follow tips for saving money at the pump. Our family abides by these tips, and we do wind up saving quite a bit of money every year because of that. Hopefully you'll be able to take advantage of these tips and save at the pump, as well!

Brought to you by Neuwirth Motors.

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