U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY  	EPA 420-F-92-004
         OFFICE OF MOBILE SOURCES


Tips  to Save Gas  and Improve Mileage


What can I do to save gas?

     Walk, bike, take a bus, or carpool when possible. Use your car only
      when necessary. Public transportation authorities often have carpooling
      information as well as transit services. If you own more than one vehicle,
      drive the one that gets the best gas mileage whenever possible.

     Combine errands into one trip. Consolidate trips to destinations that
      are near one another. Once you arrive, park and walk between destina
      tions. Save errands for one afternoon and plan your trip so you don't
      retrace your route. You not only save gas this way, but reduce wear-and-
      tear on your car.

     Drive your car wisely and maintain it properly. The way you drive
      and take care of your car can make a big difference in your gas mileage.

What can I do to get better gas  mileage when I drive?
  You can greatly improve your mileage by having your car serviced regularly
  and by driving wisely.  Any of these eight points can help improve your
  mileage:
      Go easy on the brakes and gas pedal. Avoid "jackrabbit" starts by
      accelerating gradually whenever possible. Also, anticipate stops to avoid
      sudden braking.

      Avoid long idles. Turn off the engine if you anticipate a lengthy wait.
      Instead of idling at a drive-up window, park the car and go in. Idling
      burns more gas than restarting the engine. Limit car warmups in winter.

      Avoid carrying unneeded items in the trunk. Extra weight decreases
      gas mileage. Also, reduce drag by placing items inside the car or trunk
      rather than on roof racks.

      Avoid high speeds. You can improve your gas mileage about 15  percent
      by driving at 55 mph rather than 65 mph.
                                                    FACT SHEET OMS-17.
                                                      August, 1994

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  Tips to Save Gas and Improve Mileage
      Use your air conditioning only when necessary. Roll down the
 windows or open the air vents to keep your car comfortable on not-so-hot days.

      Use overdrive.  If your car is equipped with overdrive gearing (on 5-
 speed manual transmissions and 4-speed automatic transmissions), be sure to
 make use of the overdrive gear as soon as your speed is high enough.  If you have
 a manual transmission, the lower the shift speed, the better the fuel economy.
 Your owner's manual will give you further information.

      Keep tires properly inflated and aligned. Periodic wheel alignments
 and keeping tires inflated to the maximum recommended pressure can improve
 your gas mileage.

      Get regular engine tuneups and car maintenance checks. Tuneups
 improve performance as well as gas mileage.  Check your owner's manual for
 recommended maintenance schedules. By following the manufacturer's recom-
 mendations, you should avoid fuel economy problems due to worn spark plugs,
 dragging brakes, low transmission fluid, or the transmission not going into high
 gear.

 What should I consider when buying a new car?
      Understand your needs and buy accordingly. Get only the options
 you really need.  Optional equipment that adds weight to your car can decrease
 your gas mileage (especially heavy options such as four-wheel drive).  Automatic
 transmissions generally degrade fuel economy. Larger engines and higher horse-
 power typically result in lower gas mileage.  If you need the additional power
 and torque, be aware your gas mileage will suffer during all types of driving.

      Check the gas mileage ratings of similar vehicles. Buy a fuel effi
 cient model in the size category that meets your needs. The Federal Gas Mileage
 Guide, issued annually and free of charge at all auto dealerships, compares gas
 mileage of similar models.

 For More Information:
 The Office of Mobile Sources is the national center for research and policy on air
 pollution from highway and off-highway motor vehicles and equipment. You
 can write to us at the EPA National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory,
 2565 Plymouth Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48105. Our phone number is (313) 668-4333.

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