Putting Gas Myths to the Test

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Knoxville (WVLT) - Many of you will hit the road for Independence Day and would like to save some gas mileage as you go.

So Volunteer TV’s Kim Bedford broke down some common gas-saving myths for you.

There are a lot of misconceptions out there when it comes to sparing your gas mileage.

So before you attempt any scheme to stretch your gas dollar, here's a look at what's fact and what's fiction.

Some drivers will do anything to save on gas mileage, many swear by special additives to improve your car's fuel efficiency, but according to AAA, "most of the chemicals, most of the additives, most of the gadgets, just, they don't work,” says Don Lindsey. “There's nothing there. There's nothing that really helps."

So the additives are a bust, but what about running your air conditioner all the time? Is that costing you?

"It's like diverting a little bit of that gasoline to run the air conditioner instead of making your car go forward,” explains Lindsey.

So you're going to lose a little bit of mileage, the question is how much? "Only the individual driver can tell that over a period of time,” Lindsey says.

Many people think driving with your windows down on the highway is definitely a way to drain your gas tank, but AAA says that's not the case.

"If the way the airflow over the vehicle doesn't go in and doesn't start trapping, you might not lose any mileage,” Lindsey says.

"I don't think the windows down makes a lot of sense to me,” says driver Jaye Wolfe.

The windows versus air conditioning debate depends on what kind of car you drive, so the best thing you can do is compare the two methods.

"Running the air conditioning on the same routes that you do every day, another month, do it without the air conditioner and you'll be able to tell what the difference is,” Lindsey suggests.

Then there's the myth that you should let your car idle rather than restarting it. Lindsey says "whenever you're idling, you're not going anywhere, but you're using gasoline. You get zero miles per gallon."

Some drivers insist the cheapest time to fill up is Wednesday, AAA says get it when you need it.

"I don't know. Today's Tuesday. Perhaps I should've waited until tomorrow,” says driver Steve Davis.

If you want some real ways to save on gas, AAA says driving less aggressively and driving the speed limit is the best thing you can do.

You'll also want to check your tire pressure every month.

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