Save Money on Gas Tips
FIX THE VEHICLE
It's number zero because
it is the first thing you have to do before you even start talking about
improving gas economy.
There's a maintenance philosophy that says: “If it ain't broken, don't
fix it!”, while another philosophy says that preventive maintenance is
what you should do to to save in the long run.
I am not going to argue
right now which of these philosophies is right and which is wrong. Maybe
both are right, you know? Different people in different conditions,
confronting a variety of budget problems and other considerations. For
example I had an old truck that I wanted to get rid of. I couldn't wait
till it falls apart, I just wanted it to die so I could get a new one.
Why then, should I bother to fix it before the fact, or after the fact,
or ever? I intentionally let it fall apart. The same happened to me a
decade ago with an old motorcycle that I wanted to kill. That's just one
type of consideration.
So I'm not telling you
what to do with your maintenance decisions. Do you say “If it ain't
broken, don't fix it”??? Fine with me! But hey, if IT IS broken – fix
it. Before, after, whatever. Fix it.
Remember what I said at
the beginning of the book? I am not concerned here about any other
vehicles, only those that
carry HOD systems.
Now a HOD system can work in a broken car. It will cool down an
overheating engine, for instance, and it will reduce emissions in a car
that's screwed up so far down that it stinks to high heaven.
Yet it would be unfair and
technically incorrect to demand miracles. And the main “miracle” you
want your system to perform is GAS ECONOMY. I know because I'm just like
you. Yet it has been found out that it really takes a miracle for gas
economy to occur in a car that is out of tune, has a broken piston (for
example) or is generally dilapidated.
So if you want to enjoy the full benefits and the awesome power and
magic of HHO, start with a clean baseline. Have your car fixed, checked
and tuned to factory specifications by a trustworthy mechanic.
It is recommended to have
a good tune-up done at least once or twice a year. It would even be
better to do a tune-up (and any fixing indicated by the mechanic) and
then run a basic SMOG CHECK. Before
installing the HOD.
This establishes a “before” picture, or in technical words a “baseline”.
If then you see a great deal of change and you want to know what the
numbers say, run another smog test, three weeks AFTER starting to drive
with HOD. Compare the results and I think you will have something to
Remember to ask your mechanic about any no-obvious factors that may be
reducing your fuel economy. It's not just the engine! For instance a
malfunctioning BRAKE SYSTEM might cause drag that the engine will need
to fight constantly, damaging both your safety and fuel economy.
The Alliance to Save Energy of Washington DC (phone 202-857-0666) says
that replacing a faulty oxygen sensor can improve mileage by up to 40%.
Another non-obvious factor
is WHEEL ALIGNMENT. The problem may be the wheel rims, or only the
tires. Misalignment will cause drag and vibrations. A professional wheel
guy will be able to (1) align the wheels, and (2) balance each wheel and
tire individually. It doesn't have to be the most expensive guy in town,
especially if you do not intend to drive extremely fast. Yet doing the
job will pay for itself in gas savings and a more pleasant ride.
Yet another common
malfunction is a clogged or broken exhaust system. Especially have the
exhaust repair shop check the catalytic converter, since those sometimes
have parts collapse inside, blocking free passage of air. This is a job
for the professional since in most cases you can't see the damage. I
warmly recommend though to check all possible recommendations on the
guys you deal with, otherwise they might try to replace perfectly
workable exhaust pipes or converters, causing you unnecessary expense.
And of course that's not the idea here, we're trying to save you money
in the bottom line.
Make sure your gas tank
cap is not damaged, loose or missing. 17% of gas caps are damaged or
missing, causing a yearly loss of 147 million gallons of gasoline! Gas
spillage might also be cause by overfilling (especially on cars with
caps behind the license plate), so remember to stop refilling when you
hear the first click of the gas pump.