Tricks to improve fuel efficiency
In this day and age, gasoline is expensive. One of the things people are often concerned with when it comes to vehicles is the fuel economy, both to save money from their pockets and to help save the environment. Obviously, the easiest way to ensure you’re getting good fuel economy is to buy a vehicle with great EPA-estimated efficiency; like the 2015 Toyota Prius that pumps out 4.6 l/100km on city streets and 4.9 l/100km on the highway, the 2014 Honda Civic Hybrid that gets 5 l/100km, or the 2014 Chevy Cruze that gets 5.1 l/100km on the highway. But if you aren’t in the market for a new car or already have one and are simply trying to save more money, we’ve got a few tricks to improve fuel efficiency.
The first thing to think about is if you’re bringing a lot of luggage along on a longer distance trip. If you run out of cargo space on the interior of the vehicle, your best option is to put the luggage on top of your vehicle. But simply throwing suitcases up there and strapping them down creates something called drag which both slows you down, and forces your car to use more fuel thus decreasing your efficiency. The best way to fix this is by purchasing a rooftop cargo container and throwing your items in there. These containers are generally designed to prevent drag and be just as aerodynamic as your vehicle. If a new container is out of the question, then your best option is to wrap everything in a tarp before strapping it down.
The easiest way to make sure that you’re getting the best fuel efficiency you can, is to regularly check your tire pressure. Keeping them at the correct inflation level, which is determined by the manufacturer and should be located in your owner’s manual (which should be in your glove box), keeps your fuel efficiency high. If you allow your pressure to drop lower, it will waste vital energy and decrease your efficiency, and on top of that it’ll wear your tires down much faster.
Something you should erase from your memory is the myth of warming up your car in the morning. Sure, it makes the cabin warmer for you, but it isn’t necessary to warm up the engine like many people might say. Driving the vehicle in normal conditions brings the car up to the temperature it needs to be at organically, assuming you are pushing the car too hard right away. Letting your car idle for a period of time like you do when you warm it up in the morning wastes a lot of fuel for no reason. It’d be a lot cheaper to just throw on some gloves and a warmer coat.
Lastly, if your vehicle has cruise control, you should use it as often as possible. The more progressive acceleration and deceleration utilized by cruise drastically improves your fuel efficiency. If you follow these easy steps, you’ll maximize the savings in your wallet, and cut back on the air pollution your car might have been giving off without following them.