How to Save Money with a Fuel Cost Calculator

Regardless of where you live and what you drive, the costs of running a car are huge. You might have noticed how expensive it is to fill up a tank these days, and because the costs of petrol are continuously rising, it is important to save as much money as you can on fuel. With this in mind, we will review several calculators to choose the fuel cost calculator that suits you and share some fuel saving tips.

How Can you Save Money with Fuel Cost Calculators?

Fuel calculators are generally used to find out a car’s fuel consumption or to determine the cost of fossil fuel for a certain distance. Some fuel cost calculators are more complex than others. While the simple fuel consumption calculators operate with the equation of miles driven divided by amount of gas used, others take into account factors such as vehicle type, distance travelled through town etc. to find out mpg (miles per gallon). Fuel economy calculators and trip cost calculators, on the other hand, will give you a price estimate for the journey that you wish to make.

The Best Fuel Cost Calculators

Simple fuel cost calculators can help you save hundreds of dollars on petrol every year. Furthermore, calculators with advanced features will also help you choose the best routes on your trip and the best places to tank up. We will review the best fuel cost calculators to show you how they can help you save money.

1. Fuel Cost Calculator by FuelEconomy

Link: FuelEconomy.gov

fuel cost calculator example

The fuel cost calculator developed by www.fueleconomy.gov, the official United States government source for fuel economy information, is without a doubt my favorite tool for calculating fuel costs because it features many advanced features and settings that will help you accurately estimate the fuel usage and costs for a trip. With the “My Trip Calculator” you can instantly find out and compare the fuel costs for up to three vehicles.

How to use the FuelEconomy Fuel Cost Calculator:

  • Step #1: Choose your vehicle from the “Select Year”, “Select Make”, “Select Model”, and “Select Options”, drop-down menus to automatically pull out MPG and fuel price.
  • Step #2: From the left side of the screen you can choose the starting point and destination, as well as the “city driving percentage”.
  • Step #3: Click “Go” to display fuel used and fuel cost. The calculator also displays additional information such as driving time, total distance and directions.

This tool is available for global coordinates, so you can use it even if you’re from Europe, Australia, Africa, or another part of the globe.

2. Fuel Cost Calculator by RoadTripAmerica

Link: RoadTripAmerica

If you’re looking for a simple and easy-to-use fuel cost calculator you should definitely check out the one from RoadTripAmerica. This simple online tool will allow you to set the budget for your next road trip by calculating costs according to number of miles/kilometers, miles per gallon/liters per 100km and fuel price per gallon/liter.

3. Annual Fuel Cost Calculator by FuelEconomy

Link: FuelEconomy.gov

fuel cost calculator

Another useful tool from FuelEconomy.gov is the Annual Fuel Cost Calculator that will show you exactly how much money you can save with a car over a longer period (e.g. total cost during ownership).

You can compare the amount of savings of two cars using metrics such as total mileage, ownership duration, average MPG, fuel price, etc. Click on “Calculate” to pull out savings information for one year and the total ownership duration.

This tool is particularly useful if you’re trying to decide on what car to buy. Comparing the long-run fuel savings for both will make it easier for you to decide on the better deal. Go ahead and give the annual fuel cost calculator a try!

4. Gas Guzzler Calculator

Link: Edmunds.com

fuel cost calculator

Yet another useful tool is the Gas Guzzler developed by Edmunds. While this may not be a traditional fuel cost calculator, it will help you determine the ideal price range for buying a car. Let’s say you want to get rid of your old gas guzzler and replace it with a fuel-efficient vehicle. Do you know exactly how much you will be saving after the breakeven point?

With the Edmunds calculator, you can find out the amount saved on gas monthly and the breakeven point (number of months to breakeven and begin saving on fuel), in a matter of seconds. This will make it easier for you to find the most suitable fuel-efficient vehicle for your budget and needs.

5. MPG Savings Calculator

Link: Carmax

MPG Cost Calculator

As you probably already know, a car with higher MPG will help you reduce fuel costs over time, so it’s well worth investing in a fuel-efficient vehicle. If you want to find out exactly how much money you can save with a higher MPG car every month or year, you can use the fuel cost calculator developed by Carmax. You can change metrics such as gas price per gallon and driving miles per year from at the bottom of the screen.

6. Journey Price Calculator

Link: JourneyPrice

Trip Fuel Cost Calculator

Do you want to calculate fuel cost for trip? You can use the JourneyPrice calculator to set your budget for the next trip. Here’s how you can use this simple calculator:

  • Step #1: Enter your start and end locations. Tick the “Return Journey” box if you’re also planning on driving back. If you already know the distance you can skip this step and write down the mileage.
  • Step #2: Enter the value of petrol or diesel in pence, your vehicle’s average MPG and a percentage for non-optimal driving.
  • Step #3: In the third box, write down the number of people who will be paying for the trip. You can choose to include or exclude the driver.
  • Step #4: Click on “Calculate” to calculate fuel costs for your next trip.

7. Trip Cost Calculator by GasBuddy

Link: GasBuddy

Fuel Trip Cost Calculator

This fuel cost trip calculator created by GasBuddy is one of the best available online because it also shows you where you can refill your tank along the way. It will also calculate MPG according to specific vehicle types, thus making it more accurate. Simply type down your Start and end locations and fill out the vehicle information. You also have the option to enter your own information or add advanced options (e.g. starting tank fuel, number of stops etc.).

Once you have filled out all the information needed click on the “Fuel My Trip” button and the fuel cost calculator will pull out information such as savings, total trip cost, distance, fuel used, and for the environmentally aware, carbon footprint. From the “My Fills” tab you can check out the address and location of gas stations. You can also check out the map on the “View Map” tab.

8. Heating Fuel Cost Calculator

Link: BuildingGreen

Heating Fuel Cost Calculator

Did you know that turning on the air conditioning system in the car will increase your fuel costs? With the fuel cost calculator by BuildingGreen you can calculate costs per million Btu for different types of fuel (e.g. electricity, natural gas, kerosene, coal etc.). You can also calculate fuel costs when using a heater system. If you’re thinking of switching to another type of fuel, you should definitely use this fuel cost calculator to find out exactly how much you will be able to save.

Electric Car Fuel Cost Comparison Calculator: EcoCars4Sale

How to Save Money on Fuel

The fuel cost calculators presented above will help you estimate the budget for your next trip or make the better shopping decision. Nevertheless, as advanced as they are, these calculators cannot foresee unexpected situations (e.g. traffic jams, rush hours etc.) that will ultimately affect the overall cost of fuel.

Gas pump nozzle and leaf

Green conservation. Gas pump nozzle and leaf

If you’re trying to save money on fuel you should also take into account the following fuel saving tips:

  • Never drive in the rush hour. Every time you have to stop and wait in traffic your car needs to be set in the first gear. This uses up a huge amount of fuel. Instead of wasting fuel by standing still you should avoid driving in the rush hour.
  • Don’t drive around with unnecessary weight. If you’re carrying around a lot of weight, your car will have to use more fuel to move. Leave unnecessary baggage at home to reduce fuel consumption.
  • Change spark plugs often. Although platinum spark plugs claim to last over 160,000 km, they usually foul up at around 120,000 km. They are also inexpensive and easy to replace, so you should change them as often as possible.
  • Limit your driving. A car that has been parked for several hours will have a cold engine and require more fuel for the first 5-10 miles. It is recommended to combine all your daily errands into one trip to avoid wasting fuel.
  • Accelerate smoothly & don’t push the accelerator down too far. Vehicles that are driven at a constant speed (usually around 50mph) and in the highest gear will significantly lower fuel bills. In addition to this, pushing the accelerator down a long way will use a lot of fuel. It’s better to change the gear than to force the car.
  • Do you need the air conditioning? Air conditioning uses a lot of fuel, so we I strongly recommend you turn it off.
  • Check tire pressure regularly. Low tire pressure means that the car needs to move it down the road. Five minutes dedicated to tire inflation every few weeks will save you precious money on fuel.
  • Buy Gas Early or Late in the Day. You probably didn’t know this, but gas is cooler earlier in the day. Therefore, it is denser. When temperatures rise, the density of gas falls and you get less of it from the pump.

Use these fuel cost calculators and fuel saving tips to reduce monthly consumption and save more money on your travels. If you’re having trouble with how to calculate fuel costs you should check out the detailed information displayed on each calculator.

Image Source: fuel efficiency

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