7 Simple Fuel-Saving Tips For Every Day

Being fuel-efficient is good for the environment – and good for your wallet. While you can't control the price of petrol, you can control over how you use and maintain your car. With these easy-to-implement fuel-saving tips, your fuel can take you further, and the planet will thank you too.

1. Brake slower and accelerate gently

Driving slower can help save more fuel – up to 50% in fact1. Now, we're not saying to drive at a snail's pace – you should always be conscious of speed limits. What's more important is that you avoid revving your engine unnecessarily, and don't hit the floor with the accelerator suddenly. Accelerating slowly is more fuel efficient, and avoiding situations where you'll have to brake or accelerate suddenly will help. Always keep an eye well in front of you, so you can brake gently and avoid harsh stop-starts.

2. Be smart with your air con

There's no doubt about it – we live in a hot country. And if you're in a state like NT, you'll probably be making very regular use of your car's air con. But keep in mind that using your AC can also use up more fuel, because your car's also got to run a compressor, increasing the load on your engine. However for most modern cars, having your windows down when driving at a high speed can actually use up more fuel than turning on the air con. This is due to the extra 'drag' being created. So when you're slowly cruising along, consider rolling your windows down instead. And at high speeds, roll them up and reach for that AC!

3. Don't be idle – turn your engine off!

Leaving your car idling is not only bad for the environment, but unnecessary. It's common for people to think their cars need 'warming up' for a few minutes, but this isn't the case with modern vehicles. If you're parked and waiting for someone, just turn the engine off. You won't waste any more fuel by restarting the engine when you're ready to go again.

4. Check your tyres regularly

Driving around on under-inflated tyres doesn't do your fuel tank any favours. Even a minor drop in tyre pressure can increase your vehicle's drag and fuel consumption. Make sure you check your tyre pressure regularly, around once a month. You can do this using the air hose and pressure gauge at petrol stations when you refuel. Don't know what your tyre pressure should be? This can be found in your car manual, or on a label inside one of the front door openings.

5. Keep car servicing up to date

Having your car serviced regularly can help you save on fuel consumption in a number of ways. Besides just being better for your car overall, a well-maintained vehicle will put less stress on your engine. Replacing air filters, fuel filters, changing oil, and rotating tyres will all help your car run more efficiently, so don't put off that annual service!

6. Lighten the load

Heavy cars = heavy fuel consumption. If you're carrying around everything including the kitchen sink, you may want to reconsider whether it's worth the extra fuel. If you're carting around heavy objects that you're not using regularly, it's a good idea to remove them from your car. Store them somewhere else, like a garage or shed, and only take them along when you actually need them. And like driving with your windows down at high speed, roof racks can also increase the drag on your vehicle. So if you're not using them, consider losing them.

7. Reduce your driving overall

One of the easiest ways to reduce your fuel consumption is to reduce your driving overall. Where possible, consider taking public transport, car-pooling with friends, walking, or cycling. But if these alternatives aren't an option for you, consider planning your trips a bit further in advance so you can combine more small trips into one, rather than doing several shorter car rides. Your warmed-up engine is less likely to emit as many nasty pollutants and will be more fuel efficient.

Save on more than fuel

If you like to look for ways to save when it comes to your car, you might want to consider an online insurer like Bingle. Just like you, we love finding ways to save by doing things more efficiently. Get a Bingle Comprehensive Car Insurance quote today to see how much you could save on your policy.

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1Driving to Reduce Fuel Consumption and Improve Road Safety, Monash University Accident Research Centre. PDF, 140KB.