WEST MONROE, La. (KTVE/KARD) — With gas prices rising across the nation, the West Monroe Police Department shared ways to save gas and money. According to the West Monroe Police Department’s Facebook page, keeping your vehicle properly maintained will use less gas because it works more efficiently.

The post reported that three common maintenance tasks involve keeping the tires properly inflated, changing the oil, and tuning the engine. Another tip to save on gas is don’t speed. The department said along with avoiding speeding tickets, driving the speed limit uses less gas.

According to the post, generally, once you drive more than 50 miles per hour, gas mileage rapidly decreases. The department shared that using the lowest manufacturer-recommended octane can also help save you money. Officers said that higher octanes are only necessary for specific circumstances, otherwise, you are just spending extra money for no benefit.

The next tip is to avoid unnecessary idling. Officers reported that if you are going to idle for more than a minute, it is better to turn off the engine and restart to avoid unnecessary gas usage. The post stated that using cruise control when possible would save gas. West Monroe Police explained that maintaining a constant speed improves fuel economy.

According to the Facebook post, using the air conditioner sparingly and on the economy or recirculation settings saves gas. They said that air conditioning puts about a 20 percent greater load on the engine. Officers recommended using the economy setting to circulate uncooled air and the recirculation setting to reduce the amount of outside hot air that needs to be chilled.

Officers suggested that combining errands, especially if you choose an efficient route, decreases the number of miles you drive and therefore the amount of gas used. An additional shared tip is don’t accelerate or brake hard. West Monroe Police said that aggressive driving decreases your fuel economy by about 5 percent in the city and 33 percent at highway speeds.

An additional tip is to keep car windows closed because officers said that driving with the windows open creates a greater drag on the vehicle and decreases fuel economy by about 10 percent. The final gas-saving tip is to avoid heavy loads. According to officers, don’t store unnecessary items in your car. Officers said that just an extra 100 pounds can decrease mileage by 2 percent.

The West Monroe Police Department referenced the general consensus of money market experts, who reported that the best time to buy gas in Louisiana is on Tuesday mornings. Those experts said the absolute worst time is on Friday afternoons.