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The Hack to Driving Down Car Expensesby@brianwallace
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The Hack to Driving Down Car Expenses

by Brian WallaceMay 20th, 2022
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In March of 2022, gas prices averaged $4.29, rising nearly 40% over the past 2 years. It costs $51.87 to fill the average car’s tank. Car insurance premiums in the United States have increased by 10% to $1,655 per year. Some may try to switch to cheaper gas, but that could harm one's car. Hybrid or electric vehicles may be a long term solution to gas price hysteria, but purchasing one now is complicated by supply chain shortages.

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One of the easiest places to spot inflation in America today is at the gas pump. In March of 2022, gas prices averaged $4.29, rising nearly 40% over the past 2 years. Demand has increased as pandemic lockdowns end, and responses to the Russia/Ukraine conflict have excluded Russian oil from much of the global supply. As a result, it costs $51.87 to fill the average car’s tank

Gas isn’t the only car-related expense that’s rising, either. Car insurance premiums in the United States have increased by 10% to $1,655 per year. America’s largest automobile insurers are filing for rate increases; StateFarm is asking for 4.2% more while Allstate is aiming for 12%. When asked why they want to raise rates, insurance companies have cited increased car prices, rising medical costs, and supply chain disruptions. In other words, inflation is the culprit here as well. 

In summary, inflation makes it harder to own a vehicle in America today. Unfortunately, given the state of alternate transportation systems, most Americans have to drive to maintain a normal life. How can consumers fight these rising prices? Some may try to switch to cheaper gas, but that could harm one’s car. Foregoing insurance isn’t a choice in most states, so that’s a cost car owners can’t escape. Hybrid or electric vehicles may be a long term solution to gas price hysteria, but purchasing one now is complicated by supply chain shortages. Don’t expect to get your hands on one right away.

So what can drivers do? Learn how to improve your gas mileage without damaging your car. Sudden stops and unnecessary braking reduces fuel economy by up to 40%, so drive more defensively. Avoid idling behaviors where possible by skipping the drive thru. Lastly, don’t speed. Beyond 50 mph, every 5 mph speed increase increases fuel consumption up to 14%.

Another solution is to cut unnecessary trips out of your routine. 43% of Americans are already driving less to save on gas. Limiting how much you drive by 10% can save you $275 a year in gas and insurance costs.