With gas prices hitting an all-time high, there are several ways drivers can save on fuel costs. AAA’s Steve Mazor says slowing down, driving gently and keeping tires inflated properly can save 30 percent or more on fuel. Ana Garcia reports for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Oct. 8, 2012.
Record-breaking gas prices have California drivers searching for tips to keep their cars running without breaking the bank.
"$4.79 for a gallon, that’s ridiculous, that’s five bucks. That’s pretty much close to an hour of work in middle America," said resident Ryan Shedezk.
The average price of a gallon of regular gas hit $4.668 on Monday in California, and the historically high costs are even higher in Los Angeles – where the average hit $4.703 per gallon. Still, AAA’s Steve Mazor said there ways to save up to 30 percent more on fuel.
"You can save easily 25 percent of your fuel just by slowing down, driving gently and anticipating what’s ahead of you," Mazor said, referring to driving both on surface streets and on freeways.
When approaching a red light, Mazor suggests taking your foot off the brake pedal and coasting to a stop, which he says uses little fuel.
Although most drivers said they would do whatever it takes to eliminate high gas bills, some strategies help more than others. For instance, in 2007, UPS started planning their daily routes to avoid left turns and wasting fuel idling while waiting to make a left.
Mazor said that strategy is not necessarily the best option for the typical commuter.
"What you really want to do is drive the shortest distance to get where you’re going," Mazor said.
Angelenos may not be able to change the gas prices, but they can change the way they drive.
Keeping vehicles in tip-top shape also keeps them from guzzling too much fuel too quickly: changing the oil regularly and maintaining proper tire pressure are key, Mazor said.
Also, keeping junk out of the trunk and minimizing unneeded weight will save fuel.