How to save money at the gas pump.
Fuel prices have increased just about everywhere across the country, which means filling your car’s gas tank might be taking a bigger chunk out of your monthly budget. No matter what happens with gas prices, the good news is that there are steps you can take now to reduce how much you spend at the pump, even if prices come down.
From where and when you fill your gas tank, to how you drive and how you pay, there are many ways to save at the pump while making the most of every mile. These tips and strategies can help you keep more fuel in your tank and more money in your wallet.
Spend less at the gas station.
Pay less for gas and maximize every drop of fuel with these tips:
- Fill your tank in the morning when it’s cooler outside. Colder fuel is denser, which means you get slightly more fuel per gallon versus when it’s warm.
- Fill up at the beginning of the week when prices are usually lower versus the weekend, when prices tend to be higher.
- Avoid premium gas unless your car requires it. For most cars, it’s not a necessity.
- Don’t top off your gas tank. Gas can spill when overfilled, and in some cases, once you hear the gas pump click, you’re paying for fuel flowing into the hose that doesn’t go into your tank.
- Tighten the gas cap after fueling to prevent gas or vapors from escaping into the air.
- Use an app, such as GasBuddy, AAA Mobile or Waze to find the lowest gas prices near you.
- Fill up before your tank gets too low so you’re not forced to head to the nearest gas station, which may have the highest price.
- When traveling, try to avoid fill ups in major cities, just off highway exits or near airports, where gas prices are likely to be highest.
- Join a gas station or grocery store loyalty program that rewards you with fuel points.
- Pay for your gas with a rewards credit card. Commerce Bank’s Special Connections® credit card offers rewards at gas stations and on ride sharing services.
Save on gas by watching and adjusting your driving habits.
Spend less on fill ups by paying attention to how and when you drive:
- Drive less frequently by carpooling with neighbors and colleagues. Take turns with other parents for driving kids to school and extra-curricular activities.
- Avoid multiple trips by planning errands and appointments more efficiently.
- Consider other options that may be more cost-effective — like biking, taking public transportation, using a ride share service or working remotely a few days a week.
- Improve your mileage when you do drive by reducing idle time, accelerating slowly, following the speed limit and using cruise control when you’re able.
Take care of your vehicle to save on gas.
Keep your car well maintained by following recommended schedules for tune-ups and inspections in your owner’s manual. These tips can also help improve your car’s fuel efficiency, so you get more miles per gallon:
- Keep your tires properly filled, since underinflated tires can reduce your gas mileage.
- Change air filters regularly — a dirty filter could cause your car to burn more fuel.
- Ensure that you’re using the right motor oil (check your car’s manual for details).
- Lighten your load to improve fuel efficiency. Remove heavy items from your trunk as well as any racks you’re not using.
- If you’re car shopping, consider switching to a more fuel-efficient car or an electric vehicle. Commerce Bank offers new and used auto loans with flexible terms, competitive rates and an easy application process. Learn more.
The next time you head to the gas station or plan a trip — whether it’s a few miles or several hours away — try these tips to save money at the pump. You’ll get more miles per gallon and keep more of your money for what matters most.