New Survey: Many Americans Are Following “Gassy” Advice to Save Money at the Pump

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A new survey by suggests that many people are trying to conserve money and gasoline by listening to popular myths and outdated advice.

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Most people know that they can save gasoline by shifting into neutral when going downhill, and that turning off the A/C and opening the windows conserves fuel. Unfortunately, what most people “know” isn’t always true, according to a survey published today by, a credit card comparison and education site.

When asked about eight gas-saving myths, a majority of the respondents believed that six of the erroneous tips were true.

Survey Result:

Eighty-three percent of people polled correctly believed that over-inflating the tires does not save gas.

Another 55.3 percent said that pumping gas during cool weather does not give you more fuel for your money.

However, most people fell for the following misinformation:

  •     67.7 percent said the best way to save money is to buy from gas stations offering discounts for cash purchases, or that it makes no difference where and how gasoline is purchased. In fact, consumers can usually save money by paying with credit cards that offer cash back on gas purchases. Only 17.5 percent of respondents said they usually pay for gas with cash-back rewards cards.
  •     54.3 percent believe that gas mileage can be significantly improved by using fuel additives.
  •     One of the most persistent myths is that turning off the air conditioning and opening the car windows can save gasoline. More than 56 percent believe the myth. This advice may have been true years ago, but doesn’t apply to most modern cars.
  •     51 percent believe you can save gasoline by shifting into neutral when driving downhill. Again, this advice may have been true when cars were equipped with carburetors, since shifting into neutral cuts off fuel to the engine. However, modern fuel-injected cars keep burning gasoline even when you take your foot off the gas pedal.
  •     A whopping 83.9 percent of respondents believe that changing the air filter regularly and/or installing gas-saving devices will increase gasoline mileage.

“I was encouraged by the fact that only 2.3 percent of people would drive more than five miles to save five cents per gallon,” said Charles Tran, founder of “On the other hand, it’s frustrating that more people aren’t taking advantage of credit cards that earn cash back on gas. Of all the money-saving tactics available, cash-back cards are the easiest to use.”

From May 30 to June 2, 2012 CreditDonkey polled 515 Americans with eight multiple choice and true/false questions based on popular and persistent gas-saving myths.

To view more details from the Gas-Saving Myths Survey, visit

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Charles Tran
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