Do you wish for better fuel efficiency? Well, this may surprise you, but fuel economy isn’t always down to your car. How you drive can also have a big impact on how far your tank will get you. Fuel prices have been fluctuating more than ever recently, so finding simple ways that you can reduce your fuel consumption has never been more relevant, wouldn’t you agree? We’ve put together a list of ten simple tips that will help you to save money on filling up your tank, allowing you to have some free cash to spend elsewhere.
Here are our top fuel-saving tips to help you get as many miles to the gallon as possible:
1. Plan ahead
Rather than making several short trips, which although you may think is less fuel, it’s actually more, so considers making one round trip. When you can, try and plan your routes before travelling anywhere as once the engine is warm, it will be most efficient, whereas several cold starts will increase your fuel consumption. Also, try and avoid any unnecessary braking and acceleration.
2. Check your tyre pressure
It’s a good idea to make sure that your tyres are inflated to the correct pressure, which you can find in your vehicle’s manual. If your tyres are under-inflated this will cause drag and can drastically reduce your fuel economy.
3. Look after your vehicle
By conducting regular maintenance on your vehicle, not only will this will help to reduce the potential of big servicing bills later down the line, but it will also help to improve your vehicle’s efficiency, as well as your fuel consumption.
4. Change up a gear sooner rather than later
When you’re driving, always try and drive in the highest gear possible, even if this means that you might have to change up earlier than normal. Easing off your accelerate will help to reduce fuel consumption and so will skipping gears, also known as block gear changing. If you have a fairly new car, you’ll notice that it will have a gear-shift indicator, which informs you of the most economical point to change gear, so try and pay attention to this.
5. Don’t get dragged down
Where possible, try and lighten the load on your vehicle, by taking any unnecessary items from your boot and take off your roof rack. An unused roof rack adds wind resistance, which will increase your vehicle’s drag and therefore cause your engine to work harder. So when you’re not using it, take it off as this can affect your fuel consumption.
6. Timing is key
As you may already know, driving in heavy stop-start traffic is going to affect your fuel economy. So if you can, try and avoid the rush hours. This may be difficult if you’re a commuter, but in doing this, you should notice an improvement in your fuel.
7. Gentle on your right foot
Having a gentle but steady right foot on your acceleration is important. However, it’s important to not accelerate too slowly as this can limit your fuel economy if this keeps you in lowers gears for too long. Of course, you’ll have to pull away on numerous occasions, which will mean that you’ll have to accelerate several times, but this doesn’t mean that you need to pull away like you’re at the starting line of the F1.
8. Stop/start engines
In today’s society, there are lots of cars that are fitted with stop-start technology. When you’re in a queue or perhaps just waiting for someone, take your foot off the clutch and turn off your engine. If you sit with your engine on and your foot on the clutch, your engine will continue to burn fuel. As a general rule, if you stop for over 10 seconds, switch your engine off.
9. Roll with it
You should work with gravity, rather than against it and use it to build up momentum. For example, building up momentum when driving downhill, will help you to get uphill, rather than you having to accelerate more to get up it. Accelerate accordingly and read the road so that you can plan ahead, as slowing down and accelerating again will use more fuel.
10. Easy on the air con
One of the best ways that you can improve your fuel economy is by turning off your air conditioning. As the majority of air conditioning systems rely on engine power, if you’re trying to improve your fuel economy, then you should try and refrain from switching on the air conditioning, unless you find yourself melting and you really need to.