SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– With gas prices on the rise, drivers are looking for ways to increase gas efficiency.

Local car experts said there are some things people can try to make that tank of gas last a little longer.

“Driving habits are the biggest killer of fuel efficiency,” said Clay Gunzenhauser, Service Manager with Don Vance Auto Group. “If you can just change that, you might see a difference.”

Gunzenhauser said that means trying to maintain steady speeds when driving, among other things.

“Accelerate as lightly as possible,” said Gunzenhauser. “Use cruise control when appropriate. Try not to break hard. Coast when necessary. Try to coast when you’re slowing down, instead of being hard into the breaks.

“He said it’s best to use A/C sparingly instead of rolling down the windows in a car.

“With windows down, you actually kind of create more of a parachute effect when you’re running down the highway,” said Gunzenhauser. “You’re actually costing yourself more money to run with the windows down.”

It’s also important to not carry excessive weight in a car.

“Some people run around all the time with feed sacks or just random stuff in the back of their vehicle,” said Gunzenhauser. “All that does is drag it down. Extra weight is extra fuel you’re burning.”

The next thing, he said, is to keep up proper maintenance on vehicles. That means bringing cars to the shop to get checked out.”

Checking tire pressures regularly,” said Gunzenhauser. “Normal recommendation is probably twice a month. Look for abnormal wear on your tires. Check your air filter. Make sure engine air filter is clean.”

Those small changes may only save a few dollars, but they could start adding up over time.