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Frugal Living - Save on Gas, Fuel Economy

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 0

Save Gas
In today's economy vehicle owners are more conscious on how efficient the fuel economies of their vehicles. Some may say that smaller vehicles are more fuel efficient and big vehicles are gas guzzlers. This may be a logical conclusion since bigger vehicles have heavier parts; hence it needs more power from bigger engines. Most car owners don’t relies that the mileage offered in US is far below the minimum mileage standards in other parts f the world. Some countries like China, won't allow a vehicle out of an auto manufacturing plant unless its fuel economy is at least 35 miles per gallon. Big vehicles are gas guzzlers yes, and Americans on average spend nearly half a trillion dollars on vehicle fuel alone.

In the United States, there are at least ten million SUV's on the road. It is one of the highest selling vehicles model despite the low fuel economy. One of the main reasons sited for purchasing these cars is that the average family size has increased. This may sound reasonable however, upon closer examination, some may conclude that the weight of the SUV requires massive and powerful engine like the V 8 to carry both car and passengers.  Even people who have mid sized or smaller cars often don’t drive in a way that increases the amount of mileage they get per gallon.

It can be said that inefficient vehicle fuel consumption not only equates to wasted resources but also to negative environmental impact from the use of excessive fuel. In a study it is found out that the United States consumes about 93 quadrillion of BTU (British thermal unit) per year. 85 percent of which are derived from fossil fuel which are used to run vehicles. Fuel efficiency is more important now than ever before, we have limited and depleting resources which will run out if no one does something about it.  It is theoretically predicted that the world still has 46 years worth of oil reserve left, however every year the demand for this natural resource grows by at least seven percent, which makes it more complicated for the economy.. Fuel is one of the prime commodities that humans require. Sadly, we almost have depleted this resource and a proven alternative far convenient than it is not yet at hand. It is wiser if we use this valuable resource wisely and more effectively. Driving vehicles which are gas guzzlers is not helping at all; this makes us look someone who doesn't care about the future or the long term effects of our actions. There are alternatives that can employ to increase our overall fuel efficiency and save money on gas. Opting for smaller, hybrid vehicles; these types of vehicles are more fuel efficient and perform equally well.

Reading the manual that comes with your car is the first step to assuring that you use gas wisely.  Not every car is equipped to function optimally with all types of gasoline. If the cars manual directs you to use premium gas, you should obey the advice of the manual and use premium. On the other hand if in the manual it is directed to use regular gas, you should use regular gas. The results of not following these instructions not only cost you money my increased gas consumption, but also have a slow deteriorating effect on your engine.

In general, the octane number for the regular gas is 87, for the mid-grade gas the number is 89, and for the premium gas the number is 91 or 92. This octane number varies place to place slightly depending on the percentage of oxygen presented in the air in that area. As with this oxygen the fuel take place in the combustion. This octane number does not indicate how much power the gas is able to produce during the combustion. Generally all the gases contain roughly same amount of heat energy. For a gas which has a higher octane number, means it makes less knock in the engine during combustion. This knocking is also known as detonation. On the other hand for a gas which has a lower octane number, means it makes more knock. Detonation occurs when air-fuel mixture ignites spontaneously in your car’s cylinder due to the compression of the piston. You may get a clear concept of detonation from the ideal gas law. This law says the temperature of the gas rises when it is squeezed. Moreover too much knocking is not good for your car’s engine.

Most of the cars are designed to run on regular gas and it is indicated on the car’s manual. For the higher performance cars the engines are designed such a way to use mid-grade or premium gas. In these cars higher compression rate is required to produce more power. So if you use regular gas in the high performance cars, it will produce more knock. If you use high octane gas in a car which is designed to use regular gas, it will only be the waste of your money. Some drivers think it would give the car more power. This is a common misconception that leads to a huge waste of money and a reduction of fuel economy.

Additional ways to save money on gas is to drive less. Creating a neighborhood carpool for work and school commuting is a good way to reduce the amount of money you spend on gas as well as the environmental impact of so many cars on the road. Most people have any number of errands to run on a daily basis. Try to combine your errands into to one or two trips. If the grocery store is near your kid’s school or near your office, try stopping by on your way to or from those places. If you have appointments in locations that are further away, opt for taking public transportation such as the metro rail or local bus service. Many cities in the US now run their vehicles on natural gas instead of petrol so the effect on the environment is greatly reduced.


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