While he doesn’t “buy” all of my environmental beliefs and commitments, it gave me quite a bit of pleasure to let him know (following that on-going “gas price rant”) that I could provide him with some great tips to save green and BE green. (*insert “annoyed-Dad-grumble” here!*)
Here are the steps I shared with him. Even for the biggest naysayer, there are little things we can all do to impact the environment less, AND save some cash on fuel. (Imagine, I got to tell my DAD how to drive, for a change!):
- Use the cruise – hitting that little button burns less fuel and can increase your mileage by 15%, simple as that.
- Maintain it – a well-maintained vehicle actually saves gas and creates less pollution because it runs more efficiently.
- Keep your tires properly inflated – this also affects fuel efficiency and emissions.
- Clean out your trunk – all that extra stuff you’re carting around in the back adds more weight and reduces your fuel efficiency.
- Avoid idling – did you know this consumes more fuel than when you’re actually driving, so don’t warm your car for 15 minutes and shut it off when you can.
- Skip drive-thrus – they’re also an “idle nightmare”, and (contrary to belief) restarting it does NOT use more gas.
- Keep your speed steady and stop flooring it – this is the reason cruise control is more efficient, and flooring it for just one second actually causes a burst of CO2 emissions equal to 30 minutes of normal driving.
- Stay the speed limit – for every 5 mph over 60 it’s like paying 20 cents more per gallon of gas because it burns faster (emissions!).
- Consider telecommuting for your job once a week – if it’s possible and you never asked your employer, consider it… they may say yes! Other option, carpool with a local work pal.
- Park it – imagine that! Use a little bit of foot power and walk, or get out your bike and pedal away! It’s free and there are absolutely zero emissions!
If you’re looking for a new car, the EPA offers a guide to the best car choices to meet your needs.
Now, I’m not suggesting you miff-off your dad and tell him how to drive, but he might just be impressed with your brilliance when you share some little tips to save some (green) gas money!