Fuel efficiency tips

2017-05-10 06:01

WITH yet another petrol price increase here are some tips on fuel efficient driving and car maintenance:

• Change your driving habits:

• Drive slower: The faster you drive, the more energy (fuel) is required to maintain speed. If you drive slower, your car will use less energy and overall fuel consumption will be drastically reduced.
• Drive smoother: Accelerating and braking quickly or unnecessarily increases fuel consumption. To reduce fuel consumption, rather accelerate slowly and smoothly. When braking, apply the brakes gently or alternatively take your foot off the accelerator. 

• Change gears properly: Changing gears at the right time can reduce fuel consumption. It's important to change gears without putting the engine under unnecessary strain. Don't over rev the engine while changing gears, rather change gears smoothly to reduce fuel consumption.
• Read the traffic: Anticipating the traffic and road ahead can reduce fuel consumption. For example, if a traffic light in the distance turns red, don't speed up to it and brake suddenly to a stop. Rather reduce your speed or coast' towards the traffic light. Be aware of traffic and the road ahead of you and drive accordingly to improve your fuel efficiency.
Avoid excessive idling: Idling consumes fuel. If you are idling for longer than one minute, rather turn your engine off. The amount of fuel used to restart your engine is minimal compared to idling for long periods of time.

• Plan and combine trips: Planning and combining your everyday driving trips can reduce your overall fuel consumption. A single, combined trip is more economical than several, separate trips.

• Minimise use of air conditioning: Air conditioning systems can increase fuel consumption. Only use air conditioning if you really have to, otherwise rather turn it off.
• Reduce drag: Bicycle racks, roof racks or driving with windows open increases drag which ultimately increases fuel consumption. If you are not using your bicycle or roof rack, rather take it off. Also, rather drive with windows partially open.
• Lose excess weight: Extra, unnecessary weight in your car can drastically increase fuel consumption. Remove all unnecessary items from your car to improve fuel efficiency.

• Plan a different route: Use a road map to plan an easier, less congested route to your destination. Try and avoid heavily congested roads or areas with lots of traffic lights as they will only increase your fuel consumption.

• Maintain your car. Use the correct motor oil: Make sure that when you top-up your motor oil you use the correct grade motor oil for your particular car. Refer to your owner's manual to see what motor oil is suitable for your car.
• Use the right fuel: Using the wrong fuel for your car can impact fuel consumption negatively. Check your owner's manual to see what fuel your car is designed to use.
• Keep Ttyres Inflated: Check your tyre pressure on a regular basis. Poorly inflated tyres contribute significantly to higher fuel consumption. Refer to your owner's manual to see what tyre pressure is ideal for your car.
- Cars.co.za

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