How to Get Gas Mileage Improvements by Using the Right Tire

by : mike legg

With the price of gas going through the roof, drivers are on the lookout for any way to make gas mileage improvements to their vehicles, and there seems to be an ever increasing number of so called gas mileage secrets popping up. Everything from cars that run on water with the help of hydrogen car kits, to the many tips and tricks used by the hypermiler.

Surprisingly enough there is a way to help you make gas mileage improvements even before you get to the gas pumps, and that is at the tire store. This is because many drivers have not heard about "tire efficiency" and this is due to very little information being available on the standardized ratings of tires. Many drivers could actually be adding to poor fuel economy by choosing the wrong type of tire.

There are moves in progress to get tire manufacturers to begin labelling tires for fuel efficiency. Regulations call for a programme that would create a national labelling system, this system would be similar to the energy star ratings of household appliances. In this way you will be able to choose the tire that would give you the best gas mileage improvements for your particular make and model of vehicle.

The modern tires available today are in fact far more efficient than they were 30 years ago. Rolling resistance (the power that is lost due to flexing) has been reduced by as much as 50%. And with the advances of tread patterns and the use of lighter rubber compounds they are now even more economical.

Even so efficiency can vary by up to half from tire to tire, which can reduce a vehicles fuel economy by up to 10%. Sadly this tire labelling system is yet to be put into action, so many of us are still driving on tires that instead of giving us gas mileage improvements, are actually costing us more in poor fuel economy.

However there are still ways to make sure that you are getting the best from your tires.
1)?Always keep your tires inflated to the correct pressures as a poorly inflated tire can reduce fuel economy by 3.5%
2)?When replacing your tires try to buy the same brand and model that came as original equipment on your car. (Car manufacturers are careful to fit the most efficient tires to their vehicles).
3)?Don't replace your tires until they need to be replaced as new tires are less fuel efficient than worn ones. (but don't drive on bald tires as this is not only illegal it is dangerous) So check tire treads regularly.
4)?If your tires show signs of uneven wear, such as a feathered appearance where one side is worn more than the other then you may have alignment or balance problems, either of which will reduce fuel economy.

So you see there are a few little gas mileage secrets that you can use to increase your fuel economy without going to the extremes of the hypermiler, just by using the right tires and keeping them in good running order you can achieve surprisingly good gas mileage improvements.