27 May 2014 Concept Car
If you’re serious about saving, you will need to cut vehicle fuel costs.
Fuel prices have been on the rise over the past 10 years forcing motorists to pay almost double of what they were paying previously. The rate in which fuel prices increase reatly exceeds the inflation rate. Simply put, it is becoming harder and harder for the average motorist to fill up the tank. It has been reported that some drivers have had to pawn possessions to pay for their car fuel. It is probably naïve to expect significant drop in fuel prices from petrol stations. So the only way forward is to cut the costs, therefore this situation begs a simple question: How to cut on the vehicle fuel costs?
The question is maybe simple but there is not a simple solution to help everyone. There are proven guidelines and steps that can help to achieve the best result in a specific case. Those steps depend on your driving habits, your car’s fuel economy and how well your journeys are planned.
Before diving into the possibilities of saving on vehicle fuel costs you need to calculate how much you are spending right now. In science they call it “establishing the baseline”.
If your car has an on-board computer that also records fuel economy (usually called miles per gallon / MPG), use it to get an idea on average fuel consumption presently. If your on-board computer does not provide that information or your car model has no on-board computer then you can simply try to find official manufacturers records or just calculate it yourself.
With your help we are going to conduct a simple experiment by following these steps:
Do the maths following our example and get your number for MPG. In case your car has an on-board computer you can simply reset the MPG value before conducting your experiment. Now from this moment your task is to reduce this number as much as possible.
Here are several steps and some well proved guidelines that you can employ to reduce the current MPG value and save money.
But first, here are two other important questions on how to potentially cut fuel costs:
Carbon pollution and greenhouse gas emissions should concern us all. Luckily, by improving the environment you can also cut vehicle costs. A better fuel efficiency and the use of alternative fuels, after all, improve the greenhouse gas emissions of cars significantly.
Thankfully, automakers have recognised the importance of environmental concerns. Almost all of them have at least one fuel-efficient vehicle in their model selection. Fuel cell vehicles are a ot more affordable than just a few years ago. And seeing a plug-in hybrid have long become standard fair on our highways.
Is a fuel efficient vehicle right for you? Realistically speaking, as long as petrol prices are at their current litre level, it is almost impossible to save enough on petrol to justify buying an ecologically friendly (used) car.
Even switching to natural gas is no panacea. Although natural gas costs have consistently been cheaper than petrol prices, fuel savings are minimal, because of the high costs of making the necessary changes in your vehicle.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t consider fuel cell vehicles or a plug-in hybrid. Just be aware that some of the other measures in this article may be more effective.
Some experts suggest that the best way to cut fuel costs is to switch to diesel fuel. This may seem counter intuitive at first. After all, isn’t diesel more expensive than petrol?
Curiously enough, despite higher gas prices for diesel, overall expenditure may well go down because of diesel’s higher fuel economy. Automakers have continually improved diesel engines to the point where they are now easily among the most efficient technologies available. Carbon pollution has also gone down considerably – although obviously not to the point where they can compete with alternative fuels.
Still, it is very unlikely you will actually see any serious fuel savings unless you’re a frequent driver. The future of diesels is still uncertain, so there’s a certain risks attached to them.
Again, diesels remain a great choice thanks to their fuel economy. Just don’t expect them to cut your vehicle costs for you.
With so many petrol stations around from different companies there is always a possibility to find a cheaper alternative. The first obvious choice therefore is to get the best deal around. There are some websites like PetrolPrices.com or Whatgas.com, which you can use to compare fuel prices in your area. So plan in advance to buy your fuel don’t wait when you desperately need to refill your car’s tank. A mere 20 pence per litre difference might seem insignificant. But you can save up-to £360 in a year if you fill your vehicle up at cheaperpetrol stations.
Yes, it is more homework to try to find cheaper alternatives but the end result speaks for itself. You can also keep up to date with the current fuel prices by subscribing to a special service from “Which?”
Some of the reasons that your MPG might be high could be related to a mechanical fault, which should be addressed immediately. After all, you might not only be facing a high MPG but also a complete breakdown. Usually, a regular simple maintenance would do the trick. You can find out more in our vehicle inspection section but for now here are some points to consider:
Many problems on the road can cause an additional expenditure. While there might be unexpected circumstances (which cannot be avoided), if you do your homework there is a higher chance of driving more fuel efficiently. Here are some steps that you can take:
The next culprit for causing reduced fuel efficiency is connected to our driving habits. By following the road signs and being alert can help save considerably on your car’s fuel consumption. Here are several points to consider while driving:
27 May 2014 Concept Car