All of us remember a time, which now seems like eons ago, when petrol prices hovered around Rs 50 for a litre. Though, deemed as high for those times, the price at which fuel retails now, can be termed as nothing short of insane. The prices of diesel and petrol have shot up in the past few years, making fuel a prized commodity. The direct effect of these rising fuel prices has been on the customers who are looking to purchase a car or a two wheeler. The primary factor which influences car buyers now is the vehicle’s fuel efficiency. However, no matter how fuel efficient the vehicle may be, the cost of fuel is only rising with time. Considering this, one cannot just restrict themselves with choosing a vehicle which offers high fuel efficiency. Driving habits and the condition of the vehicle are also major factors when it comes to conserving fuel. So, here are a few tips and tricks with the help of which you can save on fuel while commuting.
- Avoid Aggressive Driving – Rapid accelerating, speeding, and frequent braking an eat up a lot of fuel. These practices can reduce your fuel efficiency by as much as 33% on highways and driving within the city.
Keep Your Speed in Check– Your car’s fuel consumption is dependent on various factors like the vehicle’s aerodynamics, road friction, engine efficiency, etc. As the speed of the car increases, the fore of the wind against the vehicle also increases. The friction on the road also plays a factor. Studies conducted have suggested that once the speed of the vehicle goes beyond 80kmph, its efficiency drops significantly.
Given that, it is advisable to drive at speeds between 60 kmph to 80 kmph, depending on the kind of road you are driving on.
- A Loaded Trunk Decreases Fuel Efficiency – If the trunk of your car is loaded and heavy, it can also reduce the fuel efficiency and hence reduce mileage also.
- Regular Servicing is Necessary – With use over time, every vehicle can go through routine wear and tear. In order to keep that wear and tear in check and help restore the vehicle to optimum running condition, it is necessary that the vehicle must be regularly serviced for engine tune up, air filter cleaning, oil check, etc.
- On Highways, Drive with Your Windows Up – As compared to in-city driving, highway driving is usually done at relatively higher speeds. Driving at higher speeds with the windows down increases the drag on the vehicle which results in about 10% more fuel consumption.
- Limit the use of the Air conditioning while driving – As we all know, driving the car with the AC running can increase the load on the engine, causing greater fuel consumption. So, limit the use of air conditioning unless it's necessary.
- Maintain tire pressure– Tire pressure level must be maintained as recommended by manufacturer
- Avoid jerky driving – Sudden acceleration and sudden braking done frequently can increase unnecessary fuel consumption by up to 20%. Slow and steady acceleration and braking is the advisable technique for saving fuel.
- Avoid Running The Engine On Idle – Idling is defined as when the engine of the vehicle is running but the vehicle itself isn’t moving. This is commonly done to keep the AC running. This is a common practice which people follow while waiting in traffic but it ends up wasting a lot of fuel. It is advisable that if the wait time in traffic is more than 10 seconds, you should turn the engine off.