DURBAN - With price of petrol is increasing by 25 to 29 cents a litre and the price of diesel increases by 42 cents, consumers will have to make the most of every tank of petrol.
According to the United States of America Department of Energy, smart driving could increase your fuel economy by 40%. This means that on a tank of petrol that would only get you 650 km, you can instead get 900 km out of it.
Spokesperson for Budget Insurance Graham Craggs said that poorly maintained cars and bad driving habits are the main culprits when it comes to high fuel consumption.
Craggs said that investing in good maintenance and changing your driving habits to economy mode will help you save and keep your vehicle running for longer.
Budget Insurance has the following tips for better fuel economy:
1. Make sure that your vehicle is serviced regularly. Issues like worn out spark plus and sticky brakes add to engine inefficiency, which leads to high fuel consumption.
2. Check your vehicles wheel alignment. Bad wheel alignment causes more friction, which takes more power to overcome and results in higher fuel consumption.
3. Check for under-inflated tyres , this can also increase resistance.
4. Close the windows of you vehicle when driving, open windows cause drag.
5. Lighten the weight of the vehicle by removing unnecessary items from it. If you do mostly urban driving consider driving with half a tank of fuel.
6. Reduce the drag by removing roof racks and other accessories when they are not in use.
7. Don't floor it but rather accelerate gently.
8. Do not speed.
9. Avoid stop starting. Maintain momentum as far as possible by looking and planning ahead, flowing traffic and timing your approaches to hills, robots, and crossings better.
9. Drive in the lowest speed of the highest gear that the road and traffic conditions allow without labouring the engine.
10 Use the air conditioning only when necessary.
11. Plan your trips more carefully and do several tasks on one round trip, compared to many short ones. This limits the mileage and the amount of time it takes to get your errands done, but also keeps your car's engine running at the optimal temperature.
12. Don't get stuck in traffic. Battling through traffic not only increases fuel consumption, but the wear and tear on your car's transmission and brakes.
13. Keep your finger on the pulse by listening to up to date traffic reports and monitoring the GPS for faster routes.
Saving on fuel by maintaining your vehicle and changing the way that you drive may seem like a hassle but if you if you fill up 48 times a year at R700 per tank, 40% reduction in fuel consumption could save you more that R13000 a year said Craggs.
-BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE