Millions of people are planning summer vacation trips that involve driving throughout many parts of North America. Some are heading to the beach or a lake house, others to a national park or family reunion, and there are countless additional destinations being mapped.
During this time of heightened driving, The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company has put out some handy tips – reminding motorists of the need to practice some common-sense automotive care prior to packing the suitcases and hitting the road. Many travelers will simply jump into their vehicles and drive, unaware of the condition of the only part of their cars that comes in contact with the road – the tires.
So take a few minutes to inspect your tires, or to visit a local tire and service outlet for a check-up. The price of gasoline alone is more than enough incentive to check tire condition and air pressure before heading off on any vacation journeys.
- Blow it up: The U.S. Department of Energy has reported that every pound per square inch of tire underinflation wastes 4 million gallons of gas daily in the U.S. An underinflated tire doesn’t roll as smoothly or as easily as it was intended, so it uses more energy, robbing the vehicle of fuel efficiency.
- Keep it filtered: Replacing a clogged air filter can improve a car’s gas mileage by as much as 10 percent, and help protect the engine from impurities.
- Don’t overload: Vehicle overloading can occur when trying to jam many extra items for an extended vacation. Check the owner’s manual for the maximum recommended load details. An extra 100 pounds in the trunk reduces a typical car’s fuel economy by 1-2 percent.
- Get tuned in: Before taking that long trip, visit a trusted automotive outlet and make sure your car is properly tuned. Regular vehicle maintenance can improve gas mileage by an average of 4.1 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
- Wear a cap: The gas cap must be tight and undamaged. Approximately 17 percent of the vehicles on U.S. highways have either misused or missing gas caps, causing millions of gallons of gas to vaporize into the atmosphere.
- Be smooth: Aggressive driving wastes gas and can reduce your fuel mileage by 33 percent on the highway and 5 percent in the city. Observe the speed limit.