*This is a collaborative post
Keeping your car well-maintained has many apparent benefits, including getting the best mileage possible with petrol prices showing little signs of reducing in the UK right now, many motorists are feeling the squeeze as the average cost to fill a tank hovers around £100. Regardless of how often you drive your car, there are little habits you can adopt to help you maximise fuel and drive as efficiently as possible. Read on to find out more.
Maintain correct tire pressure and alignment
The condition of your tires is one of the most important factors in your car’s fuel economy. Blunt or worn tires can increase your fuel usage, and a difference of only 2 PSI can cause a 5% increase in fuel consumption. A tire’s profile and wheel alignment can also affect the condition of your car. If your tires are misaligned or under-inflated, you’ll put more unnecessary wear and tear on your engine. Tires that are the wrong size, worn down, or misaligned can also be dangerous. Worn tires can create a hydroplaning effect when driving in wet weather, and misalignments can cause your tires to wear unevenly, making them more prone to blowouts.
Accelerate and decelerate smoothly
Driving smoothly and efficiently is one of the most essential things you can do to improve fuel efficiency. When you accelerate, you want to do so smoothly and gradually. Avoiding rapid accelerations and abrupt stops can save you a significant amount of fuel over time. Similarly, you want to avoid slamming on the brakes when decelerating. Instead, gradually let off the accelerator as you approach a red light or a junction.
Change gears correctly
Changing gears is also an important factor in saving fuel. Ideally, you want to change gears as close as possible to the speed at which the car naturally shifts. More specifically, at around 2500 – 3000 RPM, your vehicle will naturally shift into the next gear. By changing gears at that point, you can help reduce the fuel consumed in each gear change.
Idling is not only bad for the environment but also really expensive. Not only does idling cause unnecessary wear and tear on your car, but it also wastes a significant amount of fuel and increases pollution. You may find yourself idling for several reasons, including waiting for your car to warm up, sitting in traffic, or waiting to pick someone up. You’re better off turning off the engine when you’re waiting for something and then restarting it when you need to drive again.
Service your car regularly
Regular maintenance is essential for keeping your car in good condition. It can also significantly improve your fuel economy. Regularly servicing your vehicle can help with everything from incorrect tire pressure to faulty parts. While a service is highly recommended every year or 12,000 miles, whatever comes first, it isn’t a legal requirement, unlike your MOT. But,you will notice your car drives better and is more efficient after each service.
All in all, these tips should help you save money and improve your fuel efficiency. They might seem common sense, but they’re easy to forget while driving. And once you’ve implemented these tips, there are even more ways to improve fuel efficiency— like driving the speed limit, avoiding aggressive driving, hypermiling, and even keeping your car clean and free from excess weight.