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Saturday, January 24, 2015

From school: Green Driving Tips

These are fun, simple, and practical ideas. Practice them, and you may all have some extra holiday money!

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DRIVING GREEN….and we don’t mean golf Reduce your carbon footprint and save your wallet with these seven simple green driving tips.

Clear the clutter: the greater the load, the higher the fuel consumption. Every 100-200 extra pounds lower a car's fuel economy by 1-2%, so clean out that trunk! Mind your maintenance. A well-tuned car is safer and more efficient, so check tire pressure, oil, and filters regularly. Properly inflating and aligning tires can improve gas mileage by 6-10%, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Fuel economy decreases 1% for every 3 pounds below recommended pressure. Tires can lose 1 pound of pressure per month, so check the air pressure monthly (when the tires are cold before driving). Underinflated tires also detract from safe handling and the tires' durability. Accelerate and decelerate gently. Fast, aggressive, or "jack rabbit" driving is a big fuel waster, increases pollution, and is hard on the engine. One second of high-powered driving can emit as much carbon monoxide as a half hour of normal driving. Avoid engine revs of more than 3,000 rpm by shifting up as soon as possible and using overdrive if you have it. Driving in higher gears decreases rpm, decreases fuel use, and decreases engine wear. Lower your speed and abide by the speed limits. Even small decreases in speed can lead to 10% better fuel efficiency. For example, in Consumer Reports studies slowing from 75 to 65 mph resulted in a 5 mpg performance increase, and slowing from 75 to 55 mph saved 10 mpg. Use engine braking by anticipating the traffic in front of you, lifting your foot off the accelerator, and downshifting if possible. Most cars reach peak efficiency while cruising between 55 and 60 mph, so try to maintain a constant speed. Use electrical accessories only when necessary. For example, AC (air conditioning) results in 10-25% more fuel consumption. Use the AC only if you are driving faster than 40 mph because engine power at high speeds goes to reducing drag. When driving at lower speeds, it is more efficient to roll down your windows. Do not idle. Restarting the engine burst the same amount of fuel as idling for one minute. If you will be waiting for longer than one minute, turn off the engine to save gas and money. Think differently. Plan your trips and choose routes with fewer lights and less congestion. Warmed-up engines and catalysts are more efficient and generate much fewer emissions, so combine several errands into one trip to make a big difference. You may even be able to park in one central spot and walk between some of your errands rather than

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