5 May 2008
One Way to Save On Gas
Posted by Ryan Anderson
This morning, as I was skimming headlines at CNN, I saw a link to a TIME magazine list of 10 ways to save on gas. First of all, there were only 9 suggestions in the list and most of them were silly. For example: wearing different shoes while you drive. And second of all, they miss the most important one. Therefore, I feel it is my duty to inform people about how to save money on gas. Ready?
1. Don’t drive so much!
That’s it. I promise that this tip will decrease the amount of money that you spend on gas. You’re welcome.
Also, I would like to point you all to this FactCheck explanation of why a gas tax holiday does not mean lower prices, it just means that profits go to oil companies rather than state governments.
This has been a public service announcement from the Martian Chronicles. Now back to your regularly scheduled, space-themed blog.
I don’t care how much gas costs. Take some assumptions, some people may behave differently from me, but using what I think of as reasonable assumptions, here are some numbers: Pay $35,000 for a vehicle and drive it for 10 years. Pay $2000.00 per year to insure it. Pay $500.00 per year over the whole life of the vehicle for repairs and expected maintenance of a mechanical nature. Change your oil as it says in your owners’ manual every 5,000 miles. Drive the vehicle for 100,000 miles or 10,000 per year. Get mileage of approximately 20 miles per gallon. Pay $5.00 per gallon for gas. That equals $35,000 for purchase, $20,000 for insurance, $5,000 for repairs, $600 for oil changes, AND $25,000 for gas. The gas is still only 29% of the cost of running the rig. Even if it goes to $7.00/gallon, that takes it up to about 40% which is still high but less than half the cost of the whole package. And the nice thing about gas costs is it is totally (well mostly) controllable by, as Ryan says, Driving less! What I want to know is why they cost so much to buy?
Correct footwear can make sense — and ties in with ‘drive less’.
I’ll bet a surprising amount of gas is wasted by drivers going up and down rows of parking spaces looking for THE ONE closest to the store entrance. This results in a clot of cars jockeying about, playing a stressful game of musical parking spaces. Wearing comfortable walking shoes may encourage parking away from the congested area of the parking lot. This may actually get you into the store more quickly and in better spirits.