Archive for May, 2008

Is The Gas Crisis Really A Good Thing?

Every Tuesday night I get together with some friends, play a little volleyball, drink some beers, and then we start chatting about the world’s problems and how we’d solve them.

We’ve discussed everything from the education system to religion to nuclear war. Pretty much whatever comes up, we’ll discuss.

And with gas prices being in the news so much lately, it’s probably not a surprise that we’ve discussed how to the pending disaster that high gas prices are. If another big hurricane hit the gulf of Mexico, gas prices could surge beyond $6/gallon.

However, I think that this gas crisis could actually end up being a good thing.

And before an angry mob shows up in front of my house to tar and feather me, let me explain.

When gas prices were at $1.50/gallon, did you really care how fuel efficient your vehicle was? My guess is probably not since gas guzzling SUVs were selling in record numbers.

But now with $4/gallon gas becoming a reality, a lot more people are demanding solutions. Whether it’s more fuel efficient vehicles, hybrid technology, electric vehicles, or simply walking more places, people are looking for a change.

And it’s really for us, right now, to bite the bullet and make the sacrifice to switch to a different fuel so that future generations don’t have to pay for our apathy and laziness.

And don’t kid yourself, that’s what we’ve become. We’ve become a society that only cares about “what’s in it for me.” We don’t think about the future. We’re living in a “what have you done for me lately” society and it’s a huge problem that may ultimately lead for our downfall, but I digress – let’s get back to gas.

If we were to say that we’re going to make the switch to electric/hydrogen hybrid vehicles and do so starting right now, not 10 years from now, there would certainly be plenty of growing pains. It would suck for us for a few years, but the technology would improve immensely very quickly, and we’d come out the other side much better.

I know we’ve been told the technology is years away from being commercially viable, but trust me, if we absolutely had to do it, we would and we’d do it in a hurry. Just think back to World War II – look how fast we developed new technology back then. Don’t tell me that 65 years later everything has to take 20 years. How about we just do it, get it done, and be done with it?

So my thought on these ridiculous high gas prices is that while they may not be pleasant, they will lead to change, and the higher they go, the faster things will change.

Did you enjoy this post? If so, why not subscribe to my RSS feed and be notified every time I make a new blog post.

Need an easy way to start saving money on gas right now? I recommend you get a gas card. They’re free, and the savings can really add up. Check out my gas cards page to find out which ones are recommended and which ones aren’t worth the plastic they’re printed on.

Have you signed up to get my free money saving report, “62 ways to save money on gas” yet? If not, click here to get it absolutely FREE!

Posted: May 26th, 2008
at 6:09pm by Fuel Saver


Categories: Fuel Technology,Gas Prices

Comments: 1 comment


How I Save Money On Gas

A lot of people personally ask me what I do to save money on gas? Do I drive hybrid? Do I have a bunch of gizmos in my car that make it consume less gas? Is my engine powered by hamsters?

No. No. And No.

I think a lot of people try to make saving money on gas a lot more complicated than it needs to be. Sure, a Toyota Prius hybrid is going to get a lot better gas mileage than a Chevy Suburban, but for a lot of people that just isn’t a practical switch. (assuming that if you drive a Suburban you actually have a need for a vehicle that size.)

With gas prices what they currently are (almost $4/gallon here) I spend about $80/month on gasoline.

I go through about 1 tank of gas a month unless I’m travelling that month. For me, the reason I’m able to go through so little gas is that I work from home so I don’t have any commute. And honestly, if this is something you can do or if it’s even a remote possibility, then I’d recommend checking it out. It’s something that I really enjoy.

Many businesses, maybe even your current employer, already have telecommuting programs so it’s not like you need to go out and do something dramatically different, but if you do want to have your own home based business, then I’d say go for it.

That doesn’t mean I don’t drive anywhere. I play volleyball twice a week, flag football, and floor hockey so I do have to drive to those. In the summer when it’s nice out and not raining, I like to take my motorcycle which gets 50mpg, a big change from my 22mpg van.

I also try to plan my driving so I don’t have to drive more than necessary. If I’m going to the grocery store, I make sure that I’m stocked up on everything so I don’t need to go back for another week. If I do need groceries before then, there is a smaller store about 7 blocks from my house that I walk to.

So to recap:
• I work from home (biggest way I save money on gas)
• I drive a motorcycle when the weather permits
• I walk or ride my bike when I can
• I plan my trips carefully to avoid excess driving
• I drive conservatively, accelerating slowly and anticipating when I’ll need to stop
• I use a gas card when I do fill up.

So think about what things you can start doing right now to start saving money on gas – I think you’ll find that it’s easier than you thought.

Did you enjoy this post? If so, why not subscribe to my RSS feed and be notified every time I make a new blog post.

Need an easy way to start saving money on gas right now? I recommend you get a gas card. They’re free, and the savings can really add up. Check out my gas cards page to find out which ones are recommended and which ones aren’t worth the plastic they’re printed on.

Have you signed up to get my free money saving report, “62 ways to save money on gas” yet? If not, click here to get it absolutely FREE!

Posted: May 24th, 2008
at 5:46pm by Fuel Saver


Categories: Gas Saving Tips

Comments: 1 comment


My Best Gas Saving Tips

So I was recently featured on 1620thegame and was asked to share my best gas saving tips.

You can listen the the entire 7 minute segment here:


powered by ODEO

You can also download the mp3 of the podcast at http://odeo.com/show/19188473/4/download/GaryRuplinger.mp3

But if you’d just rather get some of my best tips to save money on gas, then here are my top tips to save money on gas:

1) Stop driving like you’re running from the cops. Driving like it’s a NASCAR tryout results in NASCAR like gas mileage. Slow down, take corners slower, slow down sooner, and accelerate more slowly.

2) Get That Junk Outta Ya Trunk. I’m not saying you gotta go have liposuction, but if you’ve got all kinds of extra stuff sitting in the trunk of your car, get it outta there.

3) Get a gas card. This is a super simple way to save up to twenty cents per gallon on gas. I’ve put together a list of my favorite gas cards here. Get one, they’re free.

4) Use a gas price checker. The price of gas at gas stations can vary by as much as twenty cents per gallon and prices change on a daily basis. Use a little program like this one to help you find the cheapest gas in your area just by sticking in your zip code.

5) Stop Idling. If you’re at a railroad crossing waiting for a train. Turn off your engine. If you stop at McDonald’s for some fast food, go inside instead of using the drive thru.

6) Keep your tires inflated. It’s estimated that up to 80% of people have underinflated tires and this is causing you to spend more money than necessary on gas.

Did you enjoy this post? If so, why not subscribe to my RSS feed and be notified every time I make a new blog post.

Need an easy way to start saving money on gas right now? I recommend you get a gas card. They’re free, and the savings can really add up. Check out my gas cards page to find out which ones are recommended and which ones aren’t worth the plastic they’re printed on.

Have you signed up to get my free money saving report, “62 ways to save money on gas” yet? If not, click here to get it absolutely FREE!

Posted: May 15th, 2008
at 4:07pm by Fuel Saver


Categories: Gas Saving Tips

Comments: No comments


Is A Hybrid Really Worth The Extra Money

I just got done with an interview on Houston’s 1560 The Game about how to save money on gas and one thing that came up was if hybrid cars were really worth the extra money they cost.

I said no. You just don’t make up the extra cost when you drive them when compared to the non hybrid version of the car.

Then another guy came on and told me that with his Prius it’s totally worth it.

So let’s crunch some numbers here. Since the Prius is the most popular hybrid, I’d like to use that but there really is no comparable vehicle to compare it to so let’s instead use the the Toyota Camry and the Toyota Camry Hybrid.

The MSRP of the Toyota Camry is $19,380.
The MSRP of the Toyota Camry Hybrid is $27,389

The hybrid costs $8,009 more than the regular Camry. So if gas costs $4/gallon then you’ve got to make up 2,002 gallons of gas over the life of the vehicle to make up for the extra cost of the hybrid.

For the sake of simplicity, let’s just use city mileage since that’s where the hybird really makes a difference. The Camry gets 21mpg in the city and the Camry Hybrid gets 33mpg in the city.

Now let’s say you drive 100,000 miles (all city driving, of course). In the regular Camry you’d have used 4761 gallons of gas to do so.

With the hybrid you’d have used 3030 gallons of gas, a savings of 1731 gallons. So after 100,000 miles you’d still not have made up the difference. And let’s just say you drive 10,000 miles a year – after 10 years that hybrid you bought still hasn’t paid for itself.

Eventually, the hybrid will pay for itself if you only ever drive it in the city, but most of us don’t do that. We drive on the highway too, and on the highway the hybrid gets only a slight mileage advantage – 31mpg for the conventional engine and 34mpg for the hybrid engine.

I think the reason people think the Prius is such a good buy is because there is no conventional Prius to compare it to, but a conventional Prius would certainly cost thousands less and would still get pretty good gas mileage since it’s a small car. That’s what you need to remember. Of course Prius is going to look good when compared to a Hummer, buy so does just about every other vehicle.

That’s why I say it’s just not worth it.

I’d recommend waiting until the PHEVs are released (the plug-in electric hybrids) which will be in the next year or so or wait until the summer to get a 50mpg+ Volkswagon Jetta TDI (clean diesel powered car).

Did you enjoy this post? If so, why not subscribe to my RSS feed and be notified every time I make a new blog post.

Need an easy way to start saving money on gas right now? I recommend you get a gas card. They’re free, and the savings can really add up. Check out my gas cards page to find out which ones are recommended and which ones aren’t worth the plastic they’re printed on.

Have you signed up to get my free money saving report, “62 ways to save money on gas” yet? If not, click here to get it absolutely FREE!

Posted: May 8th, 2008
at 6:58pm by Fuel Saver


Categories: Fuel Technology,Gas Prices,Gas Saving Tips

Comments: No comments