Saturday, July 7, 2007

Increase Your Fuel Economy By X%!

We've all seen products that claim to improve your car's gas mileage by some percentage or another. Well, Autoblog reports that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency tested 93 of these products and found that nearly all of them failed to work. (And the 10 that did work worked only marginally.) This study has prompted the Federal Trade Commission to warn drivers not to waste money on them. In a Detroit News article, FTC spokesman Hampton Newsome said. "These products often are found to have little or no savings in terms of fuel economy and can damage your engine or increase emissions."

The best way to achieve decent fuel economy for your vehicle seems to be to keep it properly maintained. The FTC claims that a poorly tuned engine can increase fuel economy by 10% to 20%. In addition to regular tune ups, it's important to keep tires properly inflated and air filters clean. Your fuel economy can also be greatly affected by how you drive. Easier acceleration tends to be better, and faster highway speeds (i.e., 60+ MPH) generally hurt fuel economy.

Of course, BrightCar can help you keep your vehicle properly maintained and in top shape. In addition to reminding you when you need to take your car in for regular maintenance, BrightCar can also be set up to remind you to periodically check your car's tire pressure, for example. Also, you can monitor your vehicle's MPG on the fuel economy graph on the homepage. If you notice a dip, it might be time to check the tire pressure, clean the air filter, or take the car in for servicing.

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