How to Save Fuel With Fuel Efficient Driving

With the current situation of high fuel prices, running a vehicle costs a lot more than usual. Therefore, driving in a fuel-efficient way will save you money and fuel whilst cutting down on carbon emissions.

Read our guide on some tips and tricks on how to save fuel while driving.

What does fuel-efficient driving achieve?

By driving your vehicle in a fuel-efficient way, you will reduce exhaust emissions and air pollutants, improve road safety, and prevent excessive wear on your vehicle. In addition, you will reduce your carbon footprint and benefit from the money you save on fuel costs.

Which driving techniques save fuel?

Smooth driving

When driving, you should anticipate situations and the route ahead to avoid unnecessary braking and acceleration, as this wastes fuel. Always leave a reasonable distance between you and the vehicle in front so you can change your speed without the need to brake. 

Avoid speeding

The primary cause of fuel consumption is speeding, so you can avoid wasting fuel by maintaining a steady speed. Allowing your car to operate optimally requires less effort and saves you fuel.

Use cruise control where possible

Using cruise control while driving on the motorways will help you maintain a constant speed. This is great for saving fuel because it reduces the number of times your vehicle will slow down and accelerate, which significantly wastes more fuel. Cruise control can also benefit you by helping you to avoid a speeding fine if it is set to the speed limit.

Avoid unnecessary driving

Where possible, the best option to save fuel would be to walk or cycle instead of driving, which will reduce emissions whilst being good for your health. If this isn’t possible, trying to avoid making multiple trips by combining them would be a better option. Also, if you’re unsure of a new location, use a sat-nav or maps on your mobile device to avoid getting lost and unnecessarily wasting fuel.

Car serviced regularly

Ensuring your vehicle is serviced regularly is essential because it maintains your vehicle’s health remains in the best shape. Always follow the time period recommended by the vehicle’s manufacturer to get it serviced to ensure it is in the best condition. In addition, your vehicle’s dashboard will let you know if there is a problem. Although it is your responsibility to address the issue immediately, ignoring your warning lights could lead to serious vehicle issues and expensive repairs. 

If you want to find out more information about what a full car service is, check out our blog or if you need your car servicing then contact us here.

Change gear earlier

You shouldn’t use too many revs when using a manual vehicle as this wastes fuel and should change gear slightly earlier than you might normally do. Many modern cars have a gear indicator light to encourage the most efficient gear. If you use an automatic car, the best way to save fuel would be to use gentle acceleration.

No idling

When you idle in your vehicle, you are constantly wasting fuel. Although it doesn’t waste as much fuel as driving, it adds to your fuel consumption. So if you are parked up and have your vehicle on, then the best way to save fuel is to turn your engine off. If your vehicle can use the stop-start mode, this is a great way to save fuel, especially when stuck in traffic. In winter, ensure you scrape ice off your windscreen rather than leaving your car idle whilst you defrost your vehicle.

Air con

Using your air conditioning system will increase fuel consumption, so try to minimise using it unless you really need to. For example, if you are driving on faster roads but need to keep cool, using your air con will be more efficient than opening your windows. This is because the additional drag would result in using more fuel. 

We recommend having your air con regassed every 2 years. If your refrigerant is low, it will result in your air con having to work harder to produce cold air, which will use more fuel. 

Avoid using your air-con unless necessary if you are stuck in traffic, as stopping, or starting makes the engine work harder. 

Never have both the air con and the windows open, as this will defeat the object of having the air con on and will use twice as much fuel. 

For more information on air conditioning, check out our blog on Air Con Regassing, or if you require a regas, get in touch here

Travel light

When travelling, the best fuel-efficient option is to travel light and only carry the essential items you require. If you have any roof bars, boxes and cycle racks, you should remove them unless you are using them. Having these on your vehicle will result in your car having an increased drag because of the added weight, which will waste fuel. 

Avoid coasting

Coasting will not save you fuel and can be dangerous because you don’t have full control over your car.

Change the air filter

Air filters need to be changed regularly because dirty or damaged filters will restrict airflow into the engine, making the car work harder and consume more fuel.

Check your tyre pressure

If your tyres don’t have enough pressure in them, then your car has to work harder to move, and your tyres will wear out quicker.

Change your oil

You should always follow the vehicle’s manufacturer’s recommendations on which oil to use in your vehicle to run smoothly. By following these recommendations, you ensure your car is running efficiently and will minimise engine damage. In addition, changing the oil will prolong the engine’s life as it lubricates the metal parts, increasing the engine’s performance so it can run more efficiently. 

Turn off unnecessary electrics

More modern vehicles have many more electricals included, so ensuring they are turned off if they aren’t required will help with fuel consumption.

How Does Eco Mode Work?

Eco mode restricts the engine and transmission performance to give you good fuel economy. When you put your foot down on the accelerator, your vehicle will not go as fast as it usually would, saving you fuel.

Does eco-mode save fuel?

If your vehicle does have the option to use eco mode, then this is the best way for you to save fuel. However, the performance of the vehicle will be affected. This is nothing to worry about as they are manufactured to be safe to use all the time if you choose to. However, in some situations, such as on the motorway, you may find that it may not be suitable due to a slight delay in the acceleration. Although it would be great for driving short distances or in more built-up areas where you don’t need to accelerate quickly, the eco mode is the best option.

How does stop-start work?

Stop-start works by detecting when the car is stationary, causing the fuel and ignition to cut out which turns the engine off, although the electronics will still stay on in your car.

Stop-start is activated differently in a manual and automatic car, as it depends on the action you do. 

In a manual car

In a manual car, stop-start works when it is detected that the car has stopped moving, is out of gear (in neutral), and the clutch is released. Resulting in the fuelling and ignition being cut to turn the engine off. Then, for the car to start again, you have to engage the clutch, change into gear and carry on your journey without having to press any buttons or turn any keys.

In an automatic car

An automatic car stop-start responds when you press the brake alone. So if the car is braked to a standstill and your foot remains on the brake pedal, the automatic stop-start system will stop the engine. Then when you take your foot off the brake, the system will automatically start the engine again.

Does stop-start save fuel?

Stop-start saves fuel as it prevents you from idling your car while stationary. A Stop-start is best used when your vehicle spends significant time waiting at traffic lights or is stuck in traffic.

Get your vehicle serviced at Walker Cutting

Ensure your vehicle is well maintained for fuel efficient driving by getting your vehicle serviced at Walker Cutting. Contact us here, and one of our experienced Bosch technicians will be in touch with you. 

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