Find here some tips on how to save fuel and what life hacks you’d better not use.
Let’s do without banal advice like “change your driving style” and consider really effective ways of saving fuel.
1. No Tuning, Additives & Accessories to Improve Fuel Economy
Kangarin, sill guards, a lot of high antennas, spoilers/anti-wings, transverse roof rails with a roof rack, and even an additional side mirror cause excessive fuel consumption. They “cling” to the air and slow down the vehicle, and the engine strains and consumes more fuel. So, if you want to save on fuel, tuning is not for you.
Don’t buy accessories or additives which are claimed to reduce fuel consumption. In most cases, they are useless, and fuel savings will not pay for their cost.
2. Filter Replacement
In order to load the engine less, it must have full access to air and fuel. When the air and fuel filters are clogged, the efficiency of the engine drops. To keep up with traffic the way the driver wants, he begins intensive pressing of the gas pedal, and the engine has to strain. The cleanliness of the air filter is especially important, as well as its resistance – it should be minimal.
3. Tire Pressure Check
To ensure that your car rolls easily, check the tire pressure and inflate the tires according to the owner’s manual. Your vehicle’s recommended tire pressure can typically be found on a sticker inside the driver’s door. If the tire pressure is less than necessary, rolling resistance and fuel consumption increase.
Low-rolling resistance tires would be useful too, so pay attention to this when you’ll buy tires next time.
Also, to maintain proper wheels rolling, clean the brake mechanisms: a wheel raised on a jack or lift (in neutral and with a parking brake off) should rotate easily, making a few turns after you spin it.
Do not take excessive luggage with you: any overload matters for acceleration and affects tire deformation in the area of the contact patch, making it larger.
5. Optimal Speed
The optimal speed for economical driving is around 90 km/h (56 mph) on the highway and 70 km/h (43.5 mph) in the city.
Fuel consumption also lowers when your car occurs in an air bag of the truck in front. In this case, the resistance of the oncoming airflow is minimal, but there is a risk of getting into an accident or catching chips on the windshield, the bumper and hood paintwork. You will have to spend on repairs more than you saved on fuel.
6. Neutral Mode
There is a common misconception that putting your car in Neutral you can save fuel. Yes, this works, but only for old carbureted cars, and not for vehicles with automatic transmissions (and modern manual ones too). When the driver releases the gas pedal, the minimum possible amount of the mixture enters the combustion chamber, so there is not much sense in switching to “neutral” from this point of view.
It is also a bad idea to put the vehicle into neutral while coasting: it definitely does not help in fuel economy, but it will harm the gearbox.
7. Conditioner and Open Windows
There is another popular belief that the working air conditioner leads to increased fuel consumption, and it is advised to drive with the window open. Yes, the air conditioner consumes part of the engine power: the consumption is rather significant during acceleration and almost imperceptible during a smooth ride at highway speeds or idling.
Open windows add about 5% to the fuel consumption, and an open sunroof – about 3%. By opening the windows of the car at speed, we worsen aerodynamics, contributing to the increase of resistance to the oncoming airflow and fuel consumption by an average of 10%. So, if you want to open the windows, do it in an immobile or slow-moving car.