In today’s times, owning a car is no more a matter of luxury but rather a fundamental necessity. It’s not only more convenient to have your own vehicle but, it also gives you the needed independence and flexibility. May it be traveling in a group with family & friends or for that matter an emergency situation, it can be better managed if you have your own car. Unfortunately, there is a price that you pay for this convenience in the form of escalating fuel prices. The price of fuel lamentably fluctuates more often than the ebbing of the tides. But don’t worry, it’s not something you can’t solve. With some smart moves, you can not only increase the efficiency of your car’s engine but save some bucks on your fuel expenses. So, you get to drive past those fuel pumps more often than stop there!
- Get the Tyre Pressure, and Type Right
Did you know that tyres that are deflated by 8 psi can increase rolling resistance by as much as 20%! Check your tyres for appropriate air pressure on a monthly basis. Manufacturer’s specifications are visible on the outer wall of your tyres, so follow them for inflating the tyres. Moreover, select the narrowest possible tyres for your vehicle and those that are compatible with your driving style and your car. Narrow tyres have less frontal area, thus reducing aerodynamic drag. Opt for lighter alloy wheels over steel wheels.
- Be a Smooth Operator
Rough speedy acceleration and sudden frequent brakes might seem more adventurous but hurt your car’s fuel efficiency. Your drive should be as smooth as possible.
- Gear Up
A car consumes more fuel in lower gears while accelerating. Shift to the highest possible gear without the engine knocking. Shifting up at 2,000 rpm (1,500 rpm for diesel) results in the optimum mix of speed and economy. If you’re driving an automatic with manual shift, short shift to save fuel.
- Don’t indulge in Idleness
Modern cars now are more efficient and more likely to burn less fuel if the engine is turned off and restarted after waiting at least 10 seconds rather than having the engine run when the car is idle.
- Come Clean
Clean or replace those dirty or clogged filters, such as the air filter or the oil filter. It will be money well spent since you would be saving on fuel. A serviced engine also consumes less fuel, so stick to the service schedule. You can opt for apps that track your car’s life cycle including service schedule while sending you timely reminders.
- Roll up those Windows
A car’s fuel efficiency has a lot to do with aerodynamics. Rolled down windows, at high speed cause increased drag, thus reducing fuel efficiency more than even the AC!
- Shed that Extra Weight
Yes, you too can lose some weight and increase your car’s fuel efficiency! The heavier the car, the thirstier it will be. And ditch that child safety seat you don’t use anymore, the spare unusable tyre or even the tons of trash that you lug around treating your car as a delivery truck. Less weight means less strain on the engine so keep the boot empty, and enjoy the extra savings on fuel.
- Plan your Route
Choose your route wisely. Opt for the route with the fewest stops, traffic lights and turns. Avoid delays owing to traffic jams by starting out 10 minutes earlier than rush hour.
- Maintain a Log
Keep a track of your car’s fuel consumption & mileage. You can resort to apps offering fuel consumption & mileage meters, for maintaining this log.
- Take a Walk
If you can walk some place instead of taking your car out, you should. In case of a crowded area or street, park your car a safe distance away to avoid getting stuck with no possible parking spot. Needless to say that walking will also help you shed those extra kilos which in turn makes your car weight lighter resulting in better fuel efficiency! Ah, the ‘Chakra’ of Life and your Car.