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With gas prices high, experts share money-saving tips

Gas prices
Posted at 8:19 PM, Mar 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-16 05:02:18-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia's average price for a gallon of gas is $1.45 higher than it was a year ago. This price hike has many wondering how they can save money at the pump.

"One minute, they're $3.89, then the next day they're $4.15. It's just been such an astonishing experience," Erica Montenegro, a customer at a gas station, said. "I just don't know how people are going to do it."

In tandem with higher prices at the grocery stores, many are trying to find solutions to save.

"There goes my trip to Florida. I was looking forward to taking the kids for spring break and some of those things are where the sacrifice has to be made," Montenegro said.

Morgan Dean with AAA said there are several ways people can save money.

"Make sure that your engines are working at optimum performance. So get the oil checked, get the fluids checked," Dean said.

Poor tires could also be causing you to pay more at the pump. Dean said that under-inflated tires can decrease gas mileage by 3%. Drivers can find their car's recommended tire pressure inside of the door.

Other things like unloading heavy items from the trunk and overhead, only using premium fuel if your car needs it and reducing quick acceleration and braking can all help.

"If you're on the roadways, drive more gently. If you're one that's quick to take off from the stoplight and accelerate very quickly or rapidly, that's burning a lot of fuel," Dean said.

Dean also addressed a common myth about using your air conditioning versus rolling down the windows.

"If you're driving around town and you're probably not getting much above 35 or 40 miles per hour, it's probably better to have the windows down to cool you off instead of turning the AC on. But if you're on the interstate, it's probably better to go ahead and put the windows up and have that air conditioner on."

Other ways to save include consolidating the trips you need to make, carpooling when you can and shopping wholesale gas if it is available.

"Conserve when you go somewhere, you gotta get what you got to get done while on that side of town so you're not making unnecessary trips," Dean said.

AAA also recommends using cash when you can, using apps like Gasbuddy or Trip Tik to find the best prices and signing up for rewards programs at stations that offer it.

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