5 Eco-Friendly Driving Tips to Reduce Pollution

car on the street driving energy efficient
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Although cars contribute to pollution and play a part in global warming, completely ditching your automobile may not be a feasible alternative.

Luckily, there are small steps many of us can take to protect the environment while getting from point A to point B.

Here are easy ways to make your car greener, reduce your carbon imprint, and save some money at the pump.

Buy an Electric/Hybrid Vehicle

If you are in the market for a new car, it makes sense to start off with one that is fuel efficient and emits the lowest amount of greenhouse gases. According to The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, the greenest vehicle for 2019 is the Hyundai Ioniq Electric, which is a zero emissions vehicle, gets 150 miles per gallon, and can travel 124 miles on a fully charged battery. Other highly-rated vehicles include the Honda Clarity Electric and Kia Soul Electric.

Don't Speed, Brake Suddenly or Idle

Going faster than the speed limit will burn more gas and also up your chances of getting into an accident. Avoid braking quickly, as that will decrease gas mileage as well. Idling also releases more dangerous fumes, but if it can’t be avoided, it’s best to put the car in neutral.

Keep Up on Regular Maintenance and Oil Changes

Making sure your car is running smoothly and properly will not only increase fuel efficiency, but will also help you keep it longer. Get regular oil changes and consult your owner’s manual to make sure you are using the right grade for your car (not just the cheapest). Using the wrong grade can lower gas mileage.

Check Tire Pressure

Tires inflated to their correct levels can improve fuel economy by up to 3%. Conversely, under-inflated tires can scientifically lower gas mileage. Look in your owner’s manual or on the driver-side door jam for the proper levels for your vehicle. Also, try and keep your car light by removing any unnecessary cargo from your trunk. Added weight will definitely decrease fuel economy.

Avoid Driving When Possible

Any trip that can be managed by walking, riding a bike, or taking mass transit helps. If this isn’t an option, consider carpooling with a co-worker or running errands with a friend. Decreasing the number of cars on the road lowers pollution and reduces the amount of CO2 emissions.