Easy ways to reduce greenhouse gas pollution from motor vehicles
- Combine trips. Warmed-up engines and catalytic converters generate much less air pollution, so combining several short trips into one can make a big difference.
- Take a load off. Even 100 pounds of extra weight in a car can reduce fuel economy by 1 percent. Take a minute to unload the trunk or back seat. Remove unused racks from roof of car to streamline for better gas mileage.
- Follow the speed limit. Fuel economy is lowered by about 10 percent when you drive 75 mph instead of 65 mph. Driving over the speed limit can also increase tailpipe pollution in many vehicles.
- Keep tires properly inflated. Tires should be inflated to the pressure recommended for your vehicle; this information is often printed inside the door frame or in your owner's manual. For every 3 pounds below recommended pressure, fuel economy goes down by about 1 percent.
Tires can lose about 1 pound of pressure in a month, so check the air pressure regularly and always before going on a long trip or carrying heavy loads. Under-inflated tires can also detract from handling, safety, and how long the tires will last.
- Use regular gasoline unless the owner's manual says otherwise. High-octane fuels improve neither fuel economy nor performance and will just waste your money, unless the car requires premium.
Copyright © Washington State Department of Ecology. See http://www.ecy.wa.gov/copyright.htm