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Don’t Let Your Wallet Run to Empty on Phony Gas-Saving Devices
March 25, 2011 | 1786 views | Post a comment
BBB Warns Rising Fuel Costs Make Way for Deceptive Advertisements
San Antonio, TX -- The average price for a gallon of gasoline has risen to $3.43 statewide, up from an average of $3.16 per gallon just one month ago. As prices continue to climb, BBB reports some businesses may be taking the opportunity to make money off consumers by selling “fuel boosting” products and additives to help conserve gas. However, BBB advises consumers to be cautious of “gas-saving” products that sound too good to be true.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has tested more than 100 gas-saving devices to determine whether their use will result in any significant improvement to fuel economy. Even though a few products were found to save a small amount of gas, the EPA has not identified a single product that significantly improves fuel economy. Additionally, several of the products tested were shown to cause an increase exhaust emissions.
Currently, ads boasting “Instant Mileage Gains up to 35%” and “Gain up to 6+ MPG Now” are popping up in inboxes and on many search engine results pages. While phishing attempts can be common with this type of promotion, BBB reports most websites linked to the ads have not presented major concerns for phishing. However, these advertisements are filled with questionable statements that may entice consumers to purchase a product over $100 that will not decrease gas consumption.
BBB advises consumers to educate themselves on how to identify the following red flags of gas-saving device advertisements:
1. Federal Endorsement. While the EPA does evaluate the legitimacy of claims made by companies that produce gas-savers, no federal agency endorses gas-saving devices or additives.
2. Glowing Consumer Testimonials. Marketing materials or websites for gas-savers often contain consumer testimony on the increased fuel efficiency they experienced with the product. Often these are made up by the company and the same testimonial can be found on several different websites.
3. Too Good to be True Results. If a product could increase gas mileage by as much as 40 percent with little effort or money, it is highly unlikely the inventor needs to promote their product through spam e-mails or questionable websites.
Even though most gas-saving products are not practical solutions for getting the most out of your vehicle, BBB offers the following tips for consumers to increase fuel efficiency in normal driving conditions:
· Stay Within the Speed Limit. Gas mileage tends to decrease rapidly at speeds above 60 miles per hour, or during periods of sustained acceleration.
· Avoid Jerky Starts and Stops. Drivers can improve their gas mileage by reducing the frequency of sudden starts and stops. This means accelerating slowly when starting from a dead stop and leaving plenty of space to coast while slowing down instead of having to brake hard to slow down and punch the accelerator to get back up to speed.
· Considering Driving With the Windows Down. Using the air conditioner can decrease fuel efficiency. With mild spring temperatures still in the area, consider driving with the windows down to increase the time between trips to the gas pump.
· Keep Up With Basic Scheduled Maintenance. This includes making sure the tires are properly inflated and the oil and air filters are changed on schedule. Consult your owner’s manual for the recommended frequency this should be done.
To check the reliability of a company and find trustworthy businesses, visit BBB.
About Better Business Bureau:
BBB's mission is to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust. BBB accomplishes this mission by creating a community of trustworthy businesses, setting standards for marketplace trust, encouraging and supporting best practices, celebrating marketplace role models and denouncing substandard marketplace behavior.
Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization's high standards of ethical business behavior. BBB is the preeminent resource to turn to for objective, unbiased information on businesses and charities.
Contact BBB serving Central, Coastal and Southwest Texas at (512) 445-4748.
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