How Economical Driving Could Save you Hundreds of Pounds
It’s easy to pick up bad habits over a lifetime of driving. Fortunately, reducing your car’s impact on the environment and on your wallet is as simple as following the simple tips below. Read on to reduce your average annual fuel bill from £1,399 to as little as £837.
Maintain your car
- Have your car serviced by a professional annually, so that it’s working at peak efficiency.
- Use the correct engine oil for your car, because this will keep it running as the manufacturer intended, with minimal emissions.
- Inflate your tyres to the required pressure to get the most mileage out of them and to reduce rolling resistance which will cause your car to drink fuel.
Become a weight weenie
- Remove unnecessary weight from your boot; there’s no end to the boxes, sports bags, hampers, wellies and other items in your car boot that you don’t need to carry. So remove them and save money at the pumps.
- Remove roof bars and boxes because larger accessories increase drag. Same goes for novelty items like grille noses, headlamp eyelashes and flags, which reduce fuel efficiency by 2% – per flag!
- Combine short trips into one larger journey. If you can link up your small errands into one larger trip you’ll save fuel and reduce the number of cold starts on your engine.
- Walk or cycle short distances. We’re absolutely serious, especially if you live in a built up area. The chances are it’s quicker to cycle 1-2 miles than to drive. What’s more is, you’ll be burning fat rather than fuel, too!
Adopt good driving habits
- Smooth progression through the gears is achieved when you accelerate gently and look ahead of the car in front so you can anticipate braking.
- Rolling, rather than stopping, is the best way to save fuel at red lights. Slow to a walking pace rather than pulling up at the white stop line.
- Use the aircon while on the motorway, because it’s the most efficient way to cool down the cabin while driving at high speeds in hot weather.
- Roll down the windows at low speeds. You’ll save fuel because the drag caused by an open window is offset by the energy save by not using the aircon.
- Change into a higher gear earlier in the rev range as it will increase your speed just as effectively while saving you fuel.
- Switch off unused electricals such as the headlamps, aircon, heater, window heaters, headrest TVs (if you have them), mirror heaters, etc.
- Adhere to the speed limit; if you drive at 80mph rather than 70mph, you will use 25% more fuel on average and only reduce your journey time by 7 minutes.
- Plan journeys in advance as missing motorway junctions and getting lost in a new city is the number one way to accidentally use excess fuel.
- Avoid rush hour; it’s an ironically named time of day that sees the average speed of a car in the UK drop to 8mph – that same average car is stationary 70% of the time, too.
- Don’t bother warming up a modern car; in the days of motoring yore it was always better to warm up your engine in cold weather to reduce strain on its component parts. Modern engines aren’t nearly so delicate, so drive away as soon as it’s safe to do so. The engine and cabin will also warm up quicker this way.
Oaks Services is the leading provider of MOTs and car repairs in the Surrey area. We offer car and van maintenance services to customers throughout Addlestone, Chertsey, Shepperton and Woking, and have done for many years. We even offer half price MOTs with every service. Contact us today to book your next appointment.