Be the Motor

By: Jim Champion
The Auto Guy
By: Jim Champion
The Auto Guy

Today I want you to envision yourself as the engine of your vehicle. You will think of things in a whole different way the next time you get behind the wheel.

  • Remember when you used to jump on your bike when you were younger, only to find out that the tires were low on air? It was really tough for you to make the bike move, wasn’t it? It’s the same way with your vehicle. If the tires are low on air, the engine has to work a lot harder to make the vehicle move. An engine working hard uses more gas. Air up the tires, and get better gas mileage.

  • When your engine is running, it kind of breathes in and out like you do. The cylinders pull air and fuel in, the spark plugs fire, and the exhaust goes out the tailpipe. If you have a plugged air filter, it’s kind of like you running down the street with tape over your mouth. Obviously that’s not going to work, so make sure that you have a clean air filter to get better gas mileage.

  • Carrying around a bunch of weight when you are walking takes a lot of effort, doesn’t it? It’s the same with your vehicle. Your engine has to work harder with every pound of weight that is in the vehicle. Reduce the weight in your vehicle by removing unnecessary items, and get better gas mileage.

  • The faster your engine spins, the more gas it uses. So if you can reduce the number of times that your engine spins, you will get better mileage. Your best bet is to watch what’s called the tachometer on the dash, which tells you the speed of your engine. (If you don’t have a tach, you can still hear the speed of the engine if you turn the radio down a little bit). Keeping the engine speed to a minimum takes some practice, but it is probably the easiest way to immediately get better gas mileage. Don’t press too hard on the gas pedal and coast as often as you can, and you can get better gas mileage.

Of course the best way to save money on gas is to avoid driving altogether. Try walking or riding your bike when you can, and you might even get in shape while you are saving money!

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