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How To Improve Your Car’s Fuel Efficiency

May 14, 2024 | Car, Fuel

With the cost of fuel these days, it’s no wonder everyone’s trying to figure out how to improve their car’s fuel efficiency. The prices are nothing short of insanity. Not only is the exorbitant cost of fuel one of the main factors causing the cost of food and other household items to skyrocket, but the pressure that this necessity is placing on South African households is reaching diamond-producing levels of intensity. 

We’re all pretty eager to do what it takes to improve our cars’ fuel efficiencies and reduce how much we’re spending on fuel, whether it’s changing the nature of how we drive or adopting a few extra maintenance steps.  

If you’re keen to maximise your vehicle’s fuel economy and make your driving experience more cost-effective, then have a look at these practical tips. The aim is to help you improve your car’s fuel efficiency and save money in the long run. 

Drive Smarter For Better Fuel Efficiency 

  • Maintain A Steady Speed: Avoid rapid acceleration and sudden braking, as these actions can significantly impact fuel consumption. Instead, focus on maintaining a steady speed. 
  • Avoid Idling: Turn off your engine if you anticipate being stationary for more than a minute. Idling consumes fuel unnecessarily and contributes to increased emissions. 
  • Use Cruise Control: When driving on highways or long stretches of road, use cruise control to maintain a consistent speed and improve fuel efficiency. 
  • Reduce Speed: Driving at high speeds increases aerodynamic drag and fuel consumption, while driving within the speed limits can help keep you safer on the road and help save fuel. 

Maintain Your Vehicle For Optimal Performance 

  • Regular Maintenance: It’s easy to forget, so put a few reminders on your phone so that you can keep up with routine maintenance tasks, such as oil changes, air filter replacements, and tyre rotations to ensure your car operates efficiently. 
  • Tyre Pressure Check: Properly inflated tyres reduces rolling resistance and improves fuel efficiency. Check your tyre pressure regularly and inflate them to the manufacturer’s recommended levels. 
  • Keep Your Vehicle Light: Extra weight places additional strain on the engine and increases fuel consumption, so remove unnecessary items from your car to reduce weight and improve fuel economy. 
  • Use the Right Oil: Using the manufacturer-recommended motor oil can improve engine efficiency and reduce friction, leading to better fuel economy. 

Plan Your Journeys Wisely 

  • Combine Trips: Consolidate errands and plan your routes efficiently to minimise unnecessary driving. Combining multiple trips into one outing can help save fuel and time. 
  • Avoid Peak Traffic: Driving during peak traffic hours can lead to frequent stops and starts, increasing fuel consumption. Whenever possible, plan your journeys to avoid congested routes. 
  • Consider Carpooling or Public Transport: Sharing rides with others or using public transportation can reduce the number of vehicles on the road and contribute to lower fuel consumption and emissions. 

Feeling Informed? 

We trust that this information will help you incorporate a few fuel-saving tips into your driving habits and vehicle maintenance routine. The key is to be consistent, and over time, you’re more likely to improve your car’s fuel efficiency and save money on fuel costs. 

Our last bit of advice is to take it slow. It can be overwhelming when faced with multiple steps, so rather focus on making small changes in your driving behaviour and vehicle upkeep, gradually building up. And if you’re a diesel car driver, check out myTank to find the most affordable diesel near you!

We trust that this will help you reduce your fuel expenses, and don’t forget that AA Inform is home to a number of tools that can also help. For instance, you can use our Fuel Consumption Calculator to estimate how much fuel your car will use at difference distances in kilometers.  

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