Posted under Safe Driving

In an era where fuel prices continually fluctuate, drivers are constantly looking for ways to get better gas mileage for their vehicles. We’re here to help you learn how to improve fuel mileage on the road so you can stretch gallons and dollars further.

Pay Attention to Your Driving Habits

The best way to improve fuel efficiency is to pay attention to your driving habits. Aggressive driving is not only unsafe, but it also puts strain on the engine, which causes it to burn fuel faster. You can pay up to an extra $0.30 per gallon for every five miles per hour you drive over 50 mph. 

If you're just running inside your home for a minute or checking the mail, remember to turn off your engine. A vehicle that sits still with its engine idling gets 0 miles per gallon. Also, remove accumulated clutter in your backseat, trunk, or cargo area. Driving around with an extra 100 pounds can reduce your fuel economy by up to 2%.

Use Cruise Control When Applicable

One way to improve fuel efficiency is using your vehicle's cruise control feature. When you manually control your vehicle's speed, it's natural for your speed to fluctuate. You might accelerate too quickly or not realize when your speed has crept up, which can lead to increased fuel consumption.

On the other hand, cruise control maintains a consistent speed, eliminating these fluctuations. This steady pace helps conserve fuel and reduces the wear and tear on your vehicle's engine and transmission. However, it's important to note that cruise control is most effective when driving on long, flat stretches of road, so avoid using it when driving in the city or heavy traffic areas.

Make Sure Tires Are Properly Inflated

Underinflated tires may lower gas mileage by 0.3% for every 1 psi drop in pressure in each of the four tires. You don't have to reach for your calculator! This means that if all four tires were low, you'd see a significant improvement in fuel economy in your next tankful after properly inflating them. Plus, properly inflated tires are safer and last longer.

Ensure your tires are properly inflated by regularly checking the tire pressure. If your tires are lower than the recommended psi, which you can find in your owner's manual or on the driver-side door jamb, fill them until they reach that level.

Watch Your Speed

When it comes to improving gas mileage, driving speed is a key factor. A few considerations to keep in mind are:

  • Don’t race from stoplight to stoplight. Smooth acceleration and deceleration and avoiding unnecessary stops tend to conserve fuel.
  • Overdrive gears help improve fuel efficiency by reducing the engine speed for a given road speed. They can also reduce engine wear. 
  • Stay mindful of your speed by frequently checking your speedometer.
  • Choose routes with smooth traffic flow whenever possible. Stop-and-go traffic can significantly reduce your gas mileage.

Other Considerations to Keep in Mind

Along with paying attention to your speed, driving habits, and tire pressure, there are other considerations to keep in mind that relate to fuel efficiency. 

  • Ensure your engine is properly tuned: Servicing an out-of-tune engine or bringing vehicles that have failed emissions tests back into compliance can improve gas mileage by an average of 4% (results vary based on vehicle and types of repairs). Regular preventive maintenance can help avoid these conditions.
  • Use the recommended grade of motor oil: For example, using 5W-20 motor oil in an engine designed to use 0W-20 can lower gas mileage by 1-2%. Check your owner’s manual for your vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations.
  • Upgrade to synthetic motor oil: Typically, engines are more efficient using synthetic or synthetic blend motor oils rather than conventional motor oil.


Visit Your Local Jiffy Lube

Utilizing these strategies can help improve your vehicle's gas mileage, but you must also consider regular preventive maintenance to help keep your vehicle a well-oiled machine. Visit your local Jiffy Lube®, where trained technicians can perform essential automotive maintenance services to help maximize your vehicle's performance and fuel economy. Plus, if you have questions on how to improve fuel mileage, the friendly, knowledgeable staff can provide you with the answers or a fuel system cleaning service if needed.

NOTE: Not all services are offered at all Jiffy Lube service centers. Please call ahead or check to ensure the service is available at the Jiffy Lube location near you.

Jiffy Lube technician using the mobile bay to communicate with a customer