Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Drivers Can Improve Air Quality, Too

Gas Pumpimage by Indy Charlie used under Creative Commons license

Is giving up your car altogether unrealistic for you? Good news! There are still actions you can take to reduce the environmental impact when you have to drive.

1. Maintain Your Vehicle

A well-maintained vehicle produces 20 percent less greenhouse gas emissions, has better fuel economy and retains its value longer. Just keeping your tires properly inflated can save around $75 each year. Other items to check regularly include your air filter, vacuum and coolant hoses, oil, and oil filter. Check your vehicle’s owner’s manual for recommended maintenance intervals. Have your car adjusted by a skilled technician when necessary.

2. Don’t Top Off the Tank – Stop at the Click

Gas pumps are intentionally designed to stop filling your vehicle’s tank before it’s entirely full. The pump stops with a click when there is just enough extra space in the tank for the gasoline fumes to remain inside instead of escaping into the air. If you “top off” your tank, these fumes end up in the atmosphere. Stopping at the click is a simple habit that goes a long way in reducing air pollution.

3. Cut Back On Idling

Every year, the average driver wastes more than a full tank of gas (24.5 gallons) idling a vehicle. Cutting the average idling time in half would prevent more than 235 pounds of carbon dioxide per person from being released into our atmosphere every year! If you’re going to be idling your vehicle’s engine for more than 30 seconds, it is more fuel efficient to turn your engine off. In fact, idling your vehicle for 30 seconds or longer uses more fuel than restarting your engine. Avoid idling; not only will you save gas and money, but you’ll help keep our air cleaner.

4. Combine Errands into One Trip

Combining multiple errands into one trip is an effective way to make the most of your time and to improve air quality. Your engine operates more efficiently when it’s warm, so you can reduce emissions and save gas by taking care of all your errands in a single trip.

For more tips on improving New York’s air quality, visit

1 comment:

  1. Vehicular smoke is one of the causes of air pollution. Yep, it can be because of the particles and chemicals that it contains. Smoke from cars can affect your respiratory system and lead to different ailments. Luckily, there are ways to help lessen carbon emissions among cars. Actually, there are some fuels which are eco-friendly.

    Clarice Fullington


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