The national average for regular gasoline is $3.537 per gallon as of late August, about $0.17 less than it was this time last year, according to AAA Fuel Gauge Report. It’s time to maximize that tank of gas. Here are five tips to make every drop count.

Lead Foot

Slow down! CNN Money explains, keeping your speed at or just below the speed limit increases your fuel economy by a full thirty-five percent. A few more miles per gallon doesn’t seem worth speed awareness, but they do add up. Reducing your speed also helps save on the wear and tear of your engine and oil consumption. Use your cruise control when possible while driving on the highway. During in-city driving, avoid speeding off the line or coming to abrupt stops. From a “hypermiling” perspective, leaving room between yourself and the car in front of you reduces your need for constant braking, which further increases your overall MPG.

Charge It

Have a hybrid gas-electric combo? Keeping your battery charged lessens your need to frequently switch over to gasoline. The gasoline part of your engine’s technology is designed to be a back-up for the battery, not the other way around. Using your battery to its fullest potential reduces fuel consumption and the release of carbon emissions into the environment.

Tired Tires

Replacing old tires with new, more efficient ones from a tire company like Nitto not only looks great, but tire replacements also increase your fuel economy and driving performance. Over or under-inflating your tires hinders its performance. Keeping your Nitto tires at the recommended PSI for your car’s make and model optimizes tire life, tire performance and fuel economy, as cited by the U.S. Department of Energy. Your car will run up to 3.3 percent more efficiently. Your car will handle differently in wet, dry, even off-road conditions.

Tire Selections

Nitto offers a tire-matching function on their website where you enter the year, make and model of vehicle. Narrow the search by entering the specifications, such as wet or dry performance, quietness, ride comfort and tread life. The app matches your car to the corresponding Nitto tire options. Its description explains the features and ratings of each. From Mini Coopers and mud-slinging off-road Jeeps to the family’s SUV, Nitto is the discerning driver’s favorite tire.

Inspections & Maintenance

Even if your vehicle is equipped with a tire pressure monitoring system, inspect your tires whenever you fill up, say the experts at Car Talk. Check the depth of remaining tread and for worn spots, nails or debris stuck in the tire. Don’t wait until the computer tells you about a problem; being proactive can help prevent flat or low tires. Regular tire maintenance provides longer tire life and fuel economy.

Author Bio: Born and raised in Detroit, it just so happens Quincy Mathers is an auto expert. He hopes to open his own dealership in the Southwest someday soon, but in the meantime he is happy writing about cars and the auto industry.