[Guest post today]
Gas prices are high and so are auto insurance rates, and that means it is very important to save as much money as possible while driving.
Many auto insurance companies out there reward good drivers. While people have no control over gas prices, they absolutely can save money by adjusting how they drive. Here are a few money-saving tips to lower costs.
Reduce weight and wind resistance
One of the easiest ways to improve fuel economy and save money is to remove dead weight from a vehicle and items that increase wind drag. If there are several items in the trunk that are not needed, such as a bowling ball, rock salt during the summertime or unneeded tools, removing them can save money on gas costs. Every 100 pounds of extra weight carried by a vehicle reduces its gas mileage by about 2 percent, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Likewise, removing a roof rack that is not being used will reduce wind resistance.
Avoid sudden braking
Braking suddenly is hard on a vehicle and even harder on the braking system, which can lead to warped rotors, worn pads and possibly damaged calipers, all of which can add up to great deal of money to repair. Whenever possible, it helps to slow down sooner and brake more smoothly to make brake pads and rotors last longer and help other drivers anticipate stops.
Easy on the gas for less fuel consumption
Sudden acceleration causes far greater gas consumption than smoother, more gradual increases in speed. Going easy on the gas will reduce gas usage and save on money while also increasing road safety.
Use tires appropriate for the season
Winter tires are great for snowy weather, and radials work great during the summer, but using the wrong kind of tires during the wrong time of year can cost money. Summertime tires can slip and spin on snowy roads, costing money on gas as well as increasing the potential for accidents. Winter tires have more roll resistance and can reduce gas mileage during the summer. Using season-appropriate tires with proper inflation levels will save money. If you’re looking, Costco has a good reputation for tire installs – they fill the tires with nitrogen instead of air. This gives you better tire pressure rentention and improved fuel economy.
Take a defensive driving course
Being a safe driver results in lower auto insurance rates. Taking a defensive driving course can result in safer driving and earn a rate discount from many auto insurers.
Sign up for insurer monitoring programs
Several of the largest auto insurance companies offer rate discounts for drivers who allow them to electronically monitor their driving. Insurers can assess when, where and how people drive and give rate discounts accordingly. On average, drivers save about 15 percent on their auto insurance when volunteering for such programs.
Carpooling saves on gas and parking
Carpooling is one of the oldest and yet one of the easiest ways to save money on gas and potential parking costs. Whether carpooling to work or for regular events, such as Sunday trips to church, going to the store or other tasks, teaming up with another driver can save money on gas and parking costs.
High gas prices and high insurance rates cost a great deal each year, but some simple steps can make the cost of driving and owning a vehicle much less. Driving styles are one of the few things over which motorists have absolute control and can save them money over time.