Save money with these 10 fuel saving hacks for equestrians

Eastern Hay 770x170-March

 

Save money with these 10 fuel saving hacks for equestrians

I am always trying to save money. I live on a very tight budget and I like nice things and nice horses. I hate wasting money on anything, especially truck fuel.

Last year, during the Florida season, gas hovered around $2.00 a gallon even spiking much lower a couple of times and it made me very happy. Every penny I save on fuel, I can put towards more lessons and enjoying Sushi night at Tony’s.

Today in Ocala, I drove by gas stations trying to entice me in at $2.49. It made me want to puke. I started thinking about how I could save some money on fuel this year. So being the web detective I am, I came up with a few tips for my fellow equestrians to help you save money on fuel year-round. We can’t get to competitions without fuel, so why not save every dime we can…and of course, reduce our carbon footprint! Here are some great tips I was able to find during my little research session.

1. Apps to reduce your fuel costs
Use your phone for more than keeping you connected with your friends. Your phone can actually be a great money saving tool with these must-have apps.

  • GasBuddy
    GasBuddy maps the nearest gas station and allows sorting by price or location, so that you can find the cheapest one near you. Using GPS and cellular triangulation technology, this app allows users to search by zip code or city. Simply put in your location, and you’ll be saving money in no time. I quickly put in Ocala for GasBuddy and found many locations with cheaper gas than what I saw today running errands.
    Price: Free
    Available for: iPhone, Android and Windows phones

     

  • AAA TripTik
    Not only will AAA TripTik help find the cheapest gas prices near you, this app offers trip planning, which means it will show you the route that will use the least amount of gas. This app can be used for short, across-town trips or long, cross-country vacations.
    Price: Free
    Available for: iPhone, iPod, iPad
  • Route4Me
    Route4Me is the perfect app to use if you have to make a lot of stops and want to save gas in the process. By organizing your route sequence, this app will show you the shortest overall route, which will of course result in less dollars spent at the pump. It boasts that it can give you 25-35% better optimized directions.
    Price: Free
    Available for: iPhone, iPad
  • iGasUp
    iGasUp finds gas stations based on price or location. With 110,000 gas stations listed in its database, this app claims to be the world’s most accurate collection of gas stations and their data.  They offer real-time prices because they accumulate their data from recent credit card swipes. Simply type in your location to view results. In addition, if you’re planning ahead, simply punch in the zip code where you’re planning to be.
    Price: $0.99
    Available for: iPhone and iPod

 

 

2. Share a ride
At any given show there are always many rigs not filled to capacity with horses. Consider putting out a call on social media for anyone that wants to “truck and trailer pool” to a show. This could truly be cost savings to you and your travel buddy!

3. Lose the weight
One of the easiest ways to improve fuel efficiency is to make your load as light as possible. Time to clean out your truck and trailer. Don’t use your trailer as a storage locker, take out whatever you don’t need! After all, every 100 pounds you carry in a truck reduces the efficiency by 1% to 2%, according to multiple sources.

4. Avoid hauling cargo on trailer roof
Any rooftop items that obstruct your trailer’s aerodynamics interferes with your fuel mileage. Apparently, a large rooftop cargo box can reduce fuel efficiency by 6% to 17% on the highway, and 10% to 25% at Interstate speeds (65 mph to 75 mph). For a long trip to a horseshow, it might actually be more fuel-efficient to organize your trailer to include the rooftop load down below.\

5. Check your tires.
Under-inflated tires create drag and can decrease gas mileage by 3 percent or more. It’s simple to check your truck and trailer tire pressure using an inexpensive tire gauge. Most tires should be at around 30 to 35 pounds per square inch (psi), and your owner’s manuals will tell you what psi is ideal for your truck and trailer. You should check your tire pressure at least once a month and add air when necessary. The trick with tires is to maintain a safe tire pressure without overinflating. While slightly overinflating your tires can increase gas mileage, it also ups your risk of blowing a tire and makes it harder to brake and turn. You don’t want to put fuel savings ahead of your own safety!!!

6. Check Your Gas Cap
A bad seal or missing cap can allow up to three gallons of gas to evaporate each month. Besides costing you money this pollutes the air. When the rubber seal around your cap seems worn or damaged, buying a new cap may save you $60 or more annually.

7. Replace the Air Filter
Regular truck maintenance can help improve fuel economy. But one item on nearly every list I found says a dirty air filter can reduce your mileage by up to 10%, so have it checked during every oil change.

8. Don’t put the pedal to the medal like you are in a drag race
Fuel economy is directly proportionate to how hard you accelerate and how steady you are on the gas pedal. Driving aggressively is costly – it can lower gas mileage by 33% on the highway.

9. Don’t be a speed demon
While each vehicle reaches its optimal fuel economy at a different speed, based on today’s gas prices, you can assume that each 5 mph you drive over 50 mph is like paying an additional 16 cents per gallon for gas.

10. Avoid excess idling
10 minutes of idling uses as much fuel as travelling 5 miles. So avoid idling whenever you can.

 

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