Motorists know that 2022 has been a record-breaking year for fuel prices. Commuters, casual drivers, and weekend warriors feel the pinch at the pump. As a result, people across North America are taking whatever steps necessary to conserve fuel. Unfortunately, one of the considerations they may have overlooked is vehicle maintenance. Poor vehicle performance adversely affects fuel economy, so here’s how to maintain a vehicle to conserve fuel.

Proper tire inflation

Each decrease in tire pressure by 1 pound per square inch for four tires can decrease fuel economy by 0.2 percent. By keeping tires properly inflated, the average driver can improve gas mileage by as much as 3 percent. Drivers can consult their tire manufacturer’s specifications for proper tire pressure.

Use recommended motor oil

Engines require the right blend of products to work efficiently. Drivers can improve gas mileage by 1 to 2 percent simply by using the recommended grade of motor oil. 

Change the air filter

An engine’s ability to produce power is directly related to its ability to draw air in. A clean air filter assists with that function, whereas a dirty filter will reduce engine power and fuel efficiency.

Get a tune-up

Additional mechanical issues may affect vehicle performance and lead to excessive fuel consumption. A mechanic can run diagnostics on the vehicle and recommend things to repair or replace, such as spark plugs, ignition coils or faulty oxygen sensors. 

Treat fuel occasionally

Debris and moisture in the fuel tank can compromise combustion and impact performance. A fuel treatment product can clean out debris and dry up moisture to restore function and improve miles per gallon.

Use the air conditioning sparingly

A vehicle’s air conditioning unit uses power directly from the car’s motor. Unfortunately, this means the vehicle consumes extra gas to keep the AC unit running, reducing fuel efficiency. 

Avoid idling

Idling uses gas without getting you anywhere, and it can add up quickly over the course of a day. So if you’re going to be stopped for more than a minute or two, it’s usually better to turn off your engine and save the gas for when you’re actually on the move. Of course, this isn’t always possible or convenient, but it’s something to keep in mind when trying to stretch your gas budget. 

Remove excess cargo

Clear the trunk or cargo area of extra items that can weigh down the vehicle, requiring more power to move it. Any heavy load will negatively affect mileage.

Keeping a vehicle in top form can improve fuel economy, which can be especially beneficial during
soaring fuel costs.