Sunday, May 10, 2009

Simple Tips on Increasing Your Car Fuel Efficiency

Did you know that more than 67% of US total oil consumption goes to transportation? This number is not surprising since an average American consumes 500 gallons of gas every year. Therefore, one of the simplest ways to show our commitment to the environment is to become a better driver and maintain your car regularly. This article offers some simple tips to improve your fuel efficiency, thus save energy and contribute to the environment.

Drive properly

You should lighten up your car by removing unnecessary things. It is obvious that extra weight consumes more fuel.

Stop that idling habit of preheating your engine. Even if you drive 0 mile per hour, your car still consume fuel once it is started. Just directly drive once you start your engine.

If you are stuck on traffic, you should consider turning off your engine. Hybrid cars are so efficient because they shut off their engine automatically when at full stop. Basically they eliminate fuel consumption due to idling.

Instead of going to a drive thru, why don’t you park your car, turn off the engine, and eat in the restaurant.

Turn on the cruise control feature of your car (if available). Cruise control will help you keep at a constant speed and thus save on gas.

Sensible driving is very essential. You will lower your fuel efficiency by up to 33% in the highway and 5% in the city when you drive aggressively, accelerate abruptly, and do hard braking continuously.

If you are using manual transmission, shift to higher gear while maintaining drivability. Low gear at high speed requires more pressure on the gas pedal as compared to high gear at low speed.

Smart driving and calculate your breaking distance. For instance, if you know that you have to stop at a short distance, do not accelerate excessively. Excessive acceleration and breaking waste your fuel considerably.

It is estimated that air-conditioning system can increase fuel consumption by 15%. Turn it off whenever possible or at least reduce the thermostat.

If feasible, do not use roof rack. Use the available space in the trunk or back of your car. Your rack and items on it will create drag that can potentially reduce fuel efficiency by 5%.

Check your tire pressure and maintain the pressure recommended by the manufacturer.

If you have enough budget, switch to hybrid cars. They are much more fuel efficient than common gasoline-engine cars. Hybrid cars also have low emission capability that will reduce carbon dioxide emission that creates global warming.

You will maximize fuel efficiency when the car is light, aerodynamic, and has a small engine. Therefore, you should consider these three factors when you plan to buy a car. Small cars are preferable that those big SUVs.

Maintaining your car

Clean or replace the air filters regularly because clogged filters cause poor car performance which will lead to more fuel consumption.

Keep the wheels aligned properly is another secret of efficient fuel consumption.

Give overall maintenance to your car periodically. Dragging brakes, transmission issues, low transmission fluids, and worn spark plug are things that can reduce fuel efficiency. Choose the right type of oil for your car.

Arrange carpooling, telecommuting, and use public transport will reduce fuel consumption and maintenance cost.

These simple habits will help you save cash, prolong the serviceability of your car, and more importantly save the environment.

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