Owning a car is great but they can be quite expensive to operate. From the cost of maintenance to the price of insurance, there are many financial attachments to owning a car.
Fuel is arguably one of the most significant expenses you need to consider due to how frequent you have to top it up. The average Singaporean fills their car at least once a week and that could cost 70$-$80 depending on the type of vehicle.
Furthermore, the recent increase in fuel prices wont make financial matters any better as you’ll have to spend more money than before. On the bright side, there are plenty of ways to increase your car’s fuel efficiency and save money. Here are 10 ways to do so.
1. Remove Excess Weight
The more weight your car carries, the more fuel it will use up. Keep in mind that hauling an additional 100 pounds in your trunk could increase your fuel consumption by 1-2%! Therefore, removing extra weight from your car will patently increase fuel efficiency.
Offload unnecessary items such as heavy luggage or equipment and avoid using your trunk as storage space for heavy items. On top of fuel consumption, overloading your trunk will take a toll on your tyres too.
2. Plan Ahead
By planning your route, you can potentially avoid traffic and reduce your amount of time on the road. You’ll also know which road to take so you won’t end up taking the longer route.
Consider using web mapping applications such as Google Maps or Waze to help you get around. If you need to run errands, find locations where you can do multiple things at once such as complex buildings.
The less time you spend on the road, the better your fuel efficiency.
3. Maintain Your Tyres
Tyre maintenance is the process of inspecting your tyres for signs of wear and damage. This includes checking for tread wear, air loss, penetrations, bulges and cracks.
Tyres are designed to increase vehicle performance and they account for up to 20% of your car’s fuel consumption. Rolling around on worn out tyres will cause your engine to use more fuel especially if they’re underinflated.
If you need help checking tyres, you can always bring your car to a local workshop.
4. Avoid Idling
Your engine consumes more fuel while running at idle. In fact, a car consumes one quarter to half a gallon of fuel per hour when idling! If you’re planning to stop your car for more than a minute, it’ll be more fuel efficient to turn your engine off
Unnecessary idling is also bad for your car’s general condition and it may damage your engine overtime, resulting in the need to fork out more money.
5. Drive Conservatively
Driving in a smooth and conservative manner can greatly improve your car’s fuel efficiency. On the other hand, speeding and rapid braking will result in more fuel consumption due to a drop in gear.
Always obey the speed limit and break gently and gradually if you’re approaching a bump or stop. Maintaining a constant speed and driving conservatively is also much safer for you and your surroundings.
6. Use the Right Fuel
Always pump the right fuel when you’re at the gas station and avoid using premium fuel if your car only needs regular fuel. There are no additional benefits to using premium fuel for a low octane vehicle.
Besides poor fuel efficiency, using the wrong fuel will damage your fuel system, reduce acceleration and cause spark knock (high pitch rattling noise). Consult your manufacturer to know the right fuel type for your vehicle.
7. Perform Regular Maintenance
Going for your regular checkup and sending your car for maintenance are two of the same things. Regular maintenance is a good way to keep your vehicle in tip top condition which involves replacing air filters, oil changes and engine tune ups.
Neglecting your vehicle can significantly decrease your fuel efficiency and in the long run, may damage your vehicle as whole. Car maintenance should be performed at an interval so always keep track of when was the last time your car was serviced.
8. Use Air Conditioner Efficiently
This may be overlooked but running your air conditioner uses a lot of energy and this can reduce your car’s fuel efficiency. The engine powers the alternator which in return provides energy to your AC.
In other words, the AC uses a lot of gas while it’s running so you should always use your AC sparingly. Get some fresh air and roll down your windows from time to time or turn your AC off when you’re at a stop.
9. Avoid Rough Roads
Although roads in Singapore are generally well maintained, it’s noteworthy that rough roads can significantly rob you of gas mileage. The motion of bouncing up and down on a rough road will force you to apply more throttle hence a waste in fuel.
Avoid rough roads at all costs and drive carefully as possible if you have to go through one.
10. Avoid Revving Your Engine
You may have a powerful engine under your hood but showing off is the last thing you’d want to do if you’re looking to save fuel. Revving pulls more air and pushes more fluid, causing your engine to work harder than usual.
Avoid revving your engine especially before you switch the engine off as this will wash oil down from inside the engine, causing it to dry up the next time you start it up.
Increasing your car’s fuel efficiency is an excellent way to save money. Fuel doesn’t come cheap these days and the above tips can help improve your car’s fuel consumption and make the most out of your mileage.
On top of that, fuel efficiency will also reduce your carbon footprint and benefit the environment as a whole. Start implementing these tips today and watch your fuel efficiency improve!
If you need help getting your car fixed, checked or serviced, don’t hesitate to contact us here.