Easter holiday car check

2016-03-16 06:00
Make sure your vehicle is regularly checked regarding the oil, cooling-system levels and disposables, such as your lights. PHOTO: supplied

Make sure your vehicle is regularly checked regarding the oil, cooling-system levels and disposables, such as your lights. PHOTO: supplied

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NEW vehicle sales have plummeted in South Africa and that’s mainly due to the economy flailing with petrol
prices rising and our rand weakening. The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) reported a nine percent year-on-year drop in car sales, as motorists are holding onto their vehicles for as long as possible.

Here are easy-to-follow tips for ensuring that you not only gain optimal vehicle performance, but also save in the long run.

• Consolidate your trips. Save time and fuel by tackling several errands in one trip.

• Keep your windows closed. Open windows add drag to your car, which contributes to higher petrol bills.

• Use start-stop technology. Many newer vehicles are designed with the environmentally friendly fuel-saving-on-off system. For older vehicles, switch your vehicle off when you’re waiting for someone, and put it into neutral at red traffic lights to reduce the load on your engine.

• Keep tyres properly inflated. You should know how and when to reduce or increase your car’s tyre pressure by reading your car’s manual. Check tyre pressure at least twice a month.

• Avoid hard braking and/or acceleration. Applying brakes at a force not only wastes fuel, but it can wear out your brake pads fast and is bad for the planet.

6• Service your vehicle regularly. Make sure your vehicle is regularly checked regarding the oil, cooling-system levels and disposables, such as your lights.

• Slow down. Driving fast forces your engine to work harder by pumping out and consuming more fuel. The optimal cruising speed is 80-90km/h.

• Use gears properly. Drivers of manual
cars should drive in the right gear and change gears smoothly, to avoid damaging expensive parts.

• Use the highways. Stopping and starting on congested streets consumes more fuel, so get onto a highway where you can maintain a more regular, constant speed.

• Buy a less expensive car. The minute you drive your new car off the showroom floor, your asset begins depreciating in value. Buying a cheaper, smaller and more fuel-efficient car will help you make savings in the long run.

- Women24.

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