Stretch your gas budget with these great tips


A single mom can’t do much about the price of gas, and each time she fills the car it takes more money. The amount in the monthly gas budget may be used up by the time the month is only half over, but mom still has to get to work and run her errands. To find money to pay for the fuel, she probably has to take the money from the food, entertainment or savings budget.

Since a new fuel efficient car is probably out of the question, maybe some relief on the pocketbook can be found by some simple modifications that can help you get the most efficiency with the car you already own. Each tip, on its own, may not save a lot of money. Add them all up and adjust your routine and the pennies you save over a month may add up to something substantial.

If you use the drive-thru at the bank, pharmacy or fast food place, you are probably waiting in line for your turn at the window. When the car is running, it’s using gas. Consider parking the car and going inside to do your business. Not only will the little jaunt give you a bit of exercise, the gas you save as the car idles will add up.

Take any items you don’t need out of the car. The extra weight adds to the amount of fuel the car uses. You need to keep the spare tire, your tools and emergency kit in the trunk, of course, but the lawn chairs, coolers, toys and any items that you’ve just never unloaded and put back into the garage are just extra pounds.

Take the bikes off the car unless you’re heading to the bike trail, and if you don’t use the racks on the roof, go ahead and remove those too. You can always put them back on when you need them. If you’re not going to use the buggy or stroller, take them out of the car. It’s nice to be prepared, but sometimes we just have to be inconvenienced by loading the car every morning with the items we’ll need for the day and saving on the gas.

Follow the speed limit when driving and use the cruise control whenever you can to increase the gas mileage. You’ll get better fuel efficiency when you drive at a consistent speed.

Get in the habit of comparing gas prices as you drive. Sometimes the differences in the price of a gallon of gas makes it worth the effort to swing in and top off the tank. Don’t be fooled into driving out of your way to save a few pennies, though.

Make sure that your tires are properly inflated for the best gas mileage your car can give you. This is true at all times, but with the price of gas so high, it’s extra important.

The single mom is probably already practicing carpooling and planning her errands in her efforts to save on gas and also to be environmentally friendly. Maybe now is a good time to consider biking or walking whenever possible.

Hopefully by following the above tips, the single mom will be able to salvage her gas budget and she won’t have to dip into the food budget.

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