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Check Tire Pressure Regularly
Keep your tires inflated to the recommended pressure. Surveys show that 50 percent of all drivers' tires are underinflated. You can't 'eyeball' tire pressure and you shouldn't rely on the low tire pressure warning light--it only lights up when your tires are at least 25% underinflated. At that point you've already started wasting gas. Instead, check them monthly with a tire pressure gauge (less than $5). Underinflated tires have higher rolling resistance, causing your engine to work harder and waste almost $600 a year in gas. Low air pressure also wears out your tires twice as fast, costing you an additional $150 a year. The recommended air pressure for your vehicle's tires is on the decal pasted to the driver's door or pillar. Learn how to make your tires last longer here.
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Change Your Spark Plugs Early
Change your spark plugs BEFORE they're due. Most drivers think their spark plugs last well over 100K miles. That's true for some engines, but not all. In fact, if you own a car with a turbocharger, chances are you should be replacing your spark plugs every 30,000 miles. Refer to your car's maintenance guide for the recommended interval for your particular engine. Even then, it's never a good idea to squeeze the last drop of life out of your spark plugs. Here's why. If your 100,000-mile spark plugs have 80,000 miles on them, they're 80 percent worn. Misfires and incomplete combustion occur more frequently during that last 20,000 miles, costing you almost $450 in wasted fuel. You have to replace your spark plugs anyway, so do it early and pocket the savings. Even if you have to replace the plugs one extra time over the life of your car, you'll still come out way ahead. Figure out what to look for when buying spark plugs and get the full how-to on changing spark plugs here.