Automotive Bad Habits

22nd September 2016

Everyone has some bad habits when it comes to their car.  It’s understandable; everyone is so busy these days, who has time to fuss over their car? We could of put quite a list together but with the help of Pearson Chrysler of Richmond, VA, a factory-authorized Chrysler Jeep, Dodge, Ram dealer, we pared it down to just a few items that are simple to execute and will save you money.

Inflate those tires

Studies show that over half of the cars on the road in the US have under-inflated tires. This is unfortunate because under-inflated tires cost you money in gas mileage and in tire wear. The Discovery Channel’s show Myth Busters tested this theory and found out that letting of the air out of a set of car tires so they were inflated to 85% of normal pressure cost them 1.2% more fuel.  Given that most tires are deflated at least that amount, you can see that this is an easy situation to rectify.

Oil change intervals

Most people hold on to the old maxim of “change your oil every 3000 miles.” That was a great rule-of-thumb years ago but today’s oils are much better refined and some are purely synthetic so they last a long time. Check the owner’s manual in your car and you will likely find that the oil change interval is now 6000-8000 miles. If you are still doubting this recommendation, don’t try and verify it with a business that profits from more frequent oil changes. This would include oil change franchises and some repair shops. They are likely to say, ”Sure, that’s what the manufacturer recommends but our experience is that 3000 miles is still smart.” Don’t believe it.

You’re carrying too much stuff

Hauling cargo in your car or truck will decrease your gas mileage. The Federal Department of Energy recommends drivers avoid keeping unnecessary items in your car, especially heavy ones.  Studies show that an extra 100lbs can cost you 1% gas mileage. So if you’ve been riding around with a set of golf clubs or old sports equipment, consider keeping them in the garage.

You have a lead foot

Driving fast is a major waster of gas.  You can easily gain a whopping 8-10% by slowing down just 10 mph when you are on longer trips. It’s pretty simple why this is. It takes a lot of energy to move things through air. Just put the palm of your hand out the window when you are driving 55 mph and you will feel the force pushing it back. Now multiply the surface of your hand by about 100 times and you will see how much force the front of your car has to overcome.  Save some money and drive slower!

You don’t change your car fluids

Most people ignore the fluids in their car until they run low and a warning light comes on. This isn’t prudent.  Fluids become contaminated over time and they wear out too. Your owner’s manual will give you a recommended schedule to change your fluids on. It is best that you pay attention to this schedule, especially with your transmission fluid.

Corey is an all round tech guru who has worked at some major blue chip companies. He started Poweronemedia to share his views and knowledge with the rest of the blogging world.