The price of petrol and diesel may have stabilised a bit just recently, but it won’t be long until the prices at the pumps begin their upward journey again. Meanwhile, there are many motorists who hunt for the petrol stations that are selling the cheapest petrol or cheapest diesel, but they rarely give a second thought to how they could be saving the amount of fuel they use. Here is a list of ten easy ways that car drivers could cut down on the fuel that they use in their car.
1. Close the car windows
Car designers go to a lot of trouble to make your car aerodynamic, and then you go and ruin it by driving with your window down! Driving at any speed with your window down, or the sunroof open, causes unnecessary drag and that will make you use up more fuel.
2. Avoid driving in the rush hour
As any advanced driving course will tell you, the constant stopping and starting, that you get when you drive at peak times, burns up fuel faster than if you kept to a constant speed. If it’s possible to so, leave and hour later, or earlier for work and avoid the rush hour mayhem and you will save on fuel. If you can’t avoid the peak times, then try to anticipate the traffic in front of you as you drive, and drive along at a steady, but slower speed.
3. Turn the air-conditioning off when you don’t need it
If you are driving at a decent speed in the summer, then you are better off with the windows shut and the air-conditioning on, but if you leave the air-con switched on all year round, you could be wasting a lot of fuel. To save fuel, switch off your air-conditioning in the cold winter months and just give it a quick blast, if you need to clear the windscreen.
4. Make fewer short journeys
A car uses a lot more fuel in the first five minutes that it is started from cold, so those short trips to the local shops could be costing you a packet. If you want to save money , then you’d be better off combing several short trips into one, or not forgetting to buy the milk in the first place!
5. Check your tyre pressures
Keeping up with basic car maintenance could save you a few quid too. Ideally, you should be checking your tyre pressures fortnightly. Keep them inflated to the manufacturers recommended levels because, underinflated tyres will make you use more fuel and overinflated tyres will wear out a lot quicker.
6. Clear out all the junk from your car
If you are driving around with a load of junk in the boot of your car then that will be increasing your fuel bills too. Any extra weight in the car will mean that more fuel is needed, so cleaning out the boot of your car will improve your fuel efficiency.
7. Select the right gear
When you drive in a higher gear, you will use less fuel, so get into the habit of changing up a gear as soon as you can. Racing around in low gear might make you feel like a rally driver, but you will be burning up an awful lot of extra fuel. Smooth, gradual acceleration is the cheapest way to drive your car.
8. Take the roof rack off
If you still have the roof rack on after your summer camping trip, then that will be costing you money of fuel too. Roof racks cause a huge amount of drag on the car, so always take them off when you are not using them.
9. Drive slower
Speeding fines will put a dent in your wallet anyway, but the speed that you drive can make a surprisingly large difference to your fuel consumption too. If you were to drive at 80mph for 200 miles, instead of 70mph, your journey would cost you about £7 more than it needed to.
10. Don’t fill the tank to the top
Fuel isn’t any cheaper if you buy more, so if you are not going a long journey, don’t fill up the fuel tank to the brim. If you do, you will only be carrying more weight around, which will reduce the fuel economy of your car, and you are more likely to overfill the tank and waste some fuel.
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