Monthly Archive: February 2016

That Junk In Your Trunk Could Be Costing You $$$

We’ve all felt the cost of gasoline time and time again. It doesn’t matter if it’s dirt cheap or costing us an arm and a leg, gas is a guaranteed expense for most of us. Big or small, we love the convenience of our cars but no one loves buying gas. I remember hearing stories from my dad about my grandfather traveling across town to save a few cents on a gasoline fill up. I usually seem to wait till the very last fume before I pull into a gas station, which has landed me in some close counters with an empty gas tank.

Though we’re lucky enough to live in an age with some of the most fuel efficient vehicles ever on the road, but most often fuel efficiency doesn’t come in four-wheel-drive or turn heads… It usually means you’ll be asked to turn in your man card for that new set of Toyota Prius keys. And if you’re like me, that won’t be happening!

I began my quest for better gas millage just like anyone else: I changed the oil and air filter, checked the tire pressure on all four wheels and even bought a can of oxygen sensor and carb cleaner. All of these did improve my gas mileage a good bit! I was very pleased with my results, when after checking my MPG, I discovered I got a whole two gallons more than before! I went from fourteen miles to the gallon in my 2004 Expedition to getting sixteen to the gallon! You bet I was smiling all the way home!

Could it get even better? Well the following Saturday I was asked to go pick up my brother from a neighboring city. Needing to clear some space for his bags, I emptied a few items that had been sitting in the back of my vehicle for one reason or another. These being a chain in the event of an emergency, a few big boxes of dishes and books which I was supposed to drop off at Goodwill but hadn’t yet done so, and other random things I had allowed to collect back there. Needless to say upon removing these items I came to find that my gas millage had actually increased a whole another mile per gallon! I felt a little dumb that I hadn’t thought of doing that earlier…Of course a less loaded vehicle means less stress on the engine and more money back in your wallet!

I decided to read up more on the topic to see just how much weight would actually make a noticeable difference. According to an article written by Sebastian Blanco of the well-known Auto Blog website, just reducing the weight of a vehicle by a 100 pounds the gas mileage will improve 1-2%. Meaning if gas were priced at $2.58 a gallon it would be a total savings of .03-.05 cents a gallon, though of course the size of your vehicle would impact the total savings. Reducing just 5% of the vehicles total weight actually increases fuel economy 2.1%! Now imagine if you’re like me and instead of decreasing the weight, you start increasing the weight inside your car. That’s money right out of your pocket!

Sure they’re only pennies on the dollar but if you saved 5 cents a gallon and bought thirty gallons a week that would be $78 a year you’d be paying to haul around all that extra stuff. Take the proactive choice today and begin cleaning that junk in the truck to start saving money for every mile you drive. It’ll keep not only your wallet happy, but you too just knowing how clean your car now is!

Spring Cleaning Tips: 4 Easy Tips for a Cleaner, More Organized Home

Spring Cleaning Tips: 4 Easy Tips for a Cleaner, More Organized Home

With snow still blowing in parts of the country it may seem premature to already be discussing spring cleaning. However, it’s never too early to make a plan of action that will leave your home cleaner than perhaps ever before.

While it can feel overwhelming knowing where to start with spring cleaning, it only takes a little pre-planning to make it a mostly pain free and easy process. Follow these suggestions below to see how easy it can be.

  1. Break out the different areas you’ll be cleaning into small quick jobs that can be done in minutes. As the old saying goes, “Wheneating an elephant take one bite at a time.” Let yourself enjoy the small victories in a large battle. Get creative with this step. Are you a list maker? Start with written lists to help you stay on track and scratch off your successes as you go. If you prefer to follow someone else’s list, you can download a number of spring cleaning checklists from the web such as these from organizedhome.com.
    Look at all the rooms in the house and decide which ones you believe are the most important ones to take on. You may want to break it down even further in each room. Start with a closest or a chest of drawers for example. So much of the battle is just getting started and staying on track as you go.
  1. Gather those cleaning supplies. Before rolling up your sleeves you’ll want to have everything within an easy reach to avoid interruptions. You can never have too many rags because they’re perfect for scrubbing, dusting, shining, or even my go to, wiping your face as you go. Another thing to consider when purchasing cleaning supplies is the smell of the products you’re using because they will linger.
  1. Schedule things out. You want to make sure you can finish what you start but for longer projects you might need breaks as you go. As you clean, stay focused on the task at hand. It’s easy to get distracted or find that you’ve forgotten or misplaced something. The organized home of your future after some spring cleaning will make it easier to avoid the last one.
  1. Throw away any unwanted items or donate them to charity. This can be the hardest step for some. I have a hard and fast rule, “If I have not used it in more years then I’ve been married or I can’t remember its purpose, out it goes.” Of course your own rule will have a personal spin on it. Remember that those really valuable items that you’ve been storing may only become truly valuable after you’re gone.

These are only the very basic items to consider but hopefully they’re helpful as you tackle your spring cleaning this year. Remember to call Lone Star Hauling Services when you’ve gathered any unwanted items from your home and are ready to free up space.