Drivers across America are feeling the squeeze at the pump. Prices are high, and it can make keeping your vehicle’s tank full feel like a major financial burden. There’s not much you can do to affect fuel prices, but you can take steps to make your hard-earned dollar stretch even further.
Have a Schedule
We all have routines that we like to follow, whether it’s meal prepping for the week on Sunday or getting coffee with your friend at work on Wednesday. You can also make a consistent time each week to fill up your gas tank — it could save you some serious coin.
According to recent trends, gas prices tend to be at their lowest on Friday and Monday. If you can predict when the price per gallon will be at its lowest, you’ll pay less money every time you fill up. Of course, it’s not an exact science, but you can help your odds by monitoring prices at your preferred gas station. If after a few weeks you notice that the price jumps every Thursday, that may mean Wednesday is your best bet to save some bucks.
You can also lean on your smartphone to help you save money by downloading an app that automatically tracks gas prices. GasBuddy is one of the more popular options, and navigation apps like Waze even let you compare prices when searching for nearby gas stations.
You may have also heard that you can save money on gas if you fill up in the morning. The logic behind that idea is that gas expands when heated, so you’ll get more for your money if you fill up when it’s colder. Because the tanks that supply fuel to the pumps are deep underground, they’re not significantly impacted by changes in temperature, but it can’t hurt to make morning fill-ups the norm.
Consider How You Pay
It’s convenient to be able to pay for so much with a credit or debit card, but paying for your gas with cash could net you some hefty savings per gallon. Gas stations may offer a discount on the price of gas if you pay using cash since you’re saving them from paying the transaction fees associated with cards. The price difference can be as much as 5-10 cents a gallon, and that can add up after multiple stops at the gas station.
Speaking of multiple stops, most chain gas stations have some sort of rewards program to encourage loyalty from drivers. This can include discounts on fuel or the ability to earn points that you can put toward gift cards. You could sign up for multiple rewards programs at different fueling stations, but the best way to maximize your benefits is to regularly fill up at one company’s stations.
You could also explore your options for rewards cards from major credit card brands. Some rewards cards yield as much as 5% cash back at gas stations, which helps your dollar go further. The best way to maximize this option is to compare different cards, looking at their rates and whether they carry an annual fee.
The Way You Drive Makes a Difference
Practicing good driving habits isn’t just safer and smarter — it can also help you save money on gas. Driving aggressively can be a major drain on your wheelchair van’s fuel economy. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, bad driving habits like speeding can cut fuel economy by as much as 40% in the city and 30% on the highway. Stay as close to the speed limit as possible — the DoE says that every 5 mph you drive over 50 mph will cost you about an extra 22 cents a gallon.
Newer wheelchair vans that you’ll find at Rollx Vans come with automatic start/stop engine technology, which automatically turns off the engine when you bring the vehicle to a complete stop and instantaneously restarts it when you accelerate. Short of having that feature, you may want to consider cutting the engine off if you’re idling for more than 10 seconds at a time. When you idle, you’re burning fuel at a rate of 0 mpg, which is like throwing money out your van’s tailpipe.
Maintaining your vehicle is also a great way to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your money at the pump. Keeping your tires properly inflated will help you achieve better fuel economy, and regular oil and filter changes ensure that your engine isn’t working any harder than it has to. Getting regular service performed is an investment in your vehicle’s health, and that translates to longer life and better mileage.
Considering a New Wheelchair Van?
If you’re in the market for a new wheelchair-accessible vehicle and want to get more from your investment, fuel economy is an important factor. Full-size vans and SUVs are larger vehicles, so they consume gas much more quickly. But there are options that are surprisingly strong when it comes to efficiency.
One of our favorite vans is the Chrysler Pacifica. It’s the quietest van on the market, surprisingly luxurious, and actually quite fun to drive. The Pacifica is also one of the best options if you’re looking for a new, fuel-efficient wheelchair van. A converted Chrysler Pacifica with seating for up to five people averages an EPA-estimated 19 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway.
Shopping around for a new wheelchair van and want an option that’s great on gas? Contact the friendly experts at Rollx Vans by calling 800-956-6668, texting 952-522-8330, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll be happy to go over your options and help you find a van that’ll pay dividends for miles to come.