“Your tank should be at least half full.”
Ever hear that one? Do you do that?
Well, apparently, the high price of gasoline has resulted in fewer people doing so.
My pal Chuck Mai at AAA Oklahoma says his organization has had seen a marked increase in the number of requests for fuel delivery.
“During the first three months of this year, Oklahoma’s average pump price for self-serve regular shot up 55 cents per gallon, a jump of almost 19 percent,” he said. “At the same time, first quarter calls to AAA from Oklahoma members who ran out of fuel rose 13 percent compared to 2010.”
AAA responded to 1,053 service calls during the first quarter of this year from drivers saying they were out of fuel, compared to 931 during that same time period of last year.
Chuck says: “It appears more and more of us are betting that gas prices will come down before time for that next fill-up. Sometimes we cut it too close. But letting your vehicle regularly run on an almost-empty tank can cause even more wallet damage.”
That damage can come from many sides, both for you and your vehicle.
Chuck reminds motorists that driving consistently on a near-empty tank can cause sediment in the tank to clog the fuel pump or related components. In addition, he says, the fuel pump could overheat and fail.
AAA has these suggestions:
* Don’t let your fuel level dip below less than a quarter of a tank.
* Don’t touch or pump the gas pedal repeatedly when tying to start a vehicle that has run out of gas.
* Drive as fuel efficiently as possible by adopting a gentler driving style, slowing down, and avoiding slamming on the brakes or accelerating suddenly.
You can check gas prices station-by-station by using AAA’s free Fuel Price Finder online at AAA.com. Click on Fuel News & Tools in the AAA News & Safety section.
The price at the pump can change rapidly, so be prepared.
I recently left my house to pick up a prescription at a nearby pharmacy. I noticed the price at the pump of a station on the corner across from the pharmacy was 5 cents higher per gallon than the night before.
But after a 10-minute stop inside the store, I passed the same station en route home and noticed the price had increased another 7 cents, just in the time I had been at the pharmacy.
That afternoon, the same station had dropped the price back 2 cents. But the next day, it was up another 3 cents. That’s when my frustration and anger set in.
And by the way, I’m told that’s damaging to my system.
You can learn more about the gas prices, vehicle maintenance and learning to remain calm by going to http://knowit.newsok.com/buying-a-car-oklahoma, http://knowit.newsok.com/money-oklahoma and http://knowit.newsok.com/mental-health-oklahoma.