Does the amount of gas in my gas tank affect the performance and maintenance of a car? Are there are any advantages or disadvantages to either running the gas tank all the way down or topping it up when it gets filled? Is there a 'preffered' amount of gas a car should have (i.e. keeping the tank between a third and two thirds full)?
I've been bit curious about this recently since I've found more gas station that are same price cash or credit and find credit to just be more convenient. One of the side benefits of this is that instead of having to fill up a 'round number' worth of gas (i.e. $20), I usually just fill up the tank completely. I'm curious to know whether that has any performance effects on the car as a whole as opposed to smaller, incomplete fill-ups.
While I'm curios to know of a general answer to this question as well, if this varies based on car, I'll use a 2002 Toyota Avalon for this example.