Environmental Chemistry

Tips to save fuel while driving?

Fuel saving secrets


10 tips to save fuel on driving

The bill at the pump does not only depend on taxes and the price of oil : it also comes from you! Indeed, eco-driving can reduce its consumption by 10 to 20% and earn up to 335 euros per year (calculation for a Peugeot 3008 consuming 8 l / 100 km and running 13,000 km / year). Misconceptions and bad habits are still common. Our advice to reduce the gas bill and limit pollution.

1. Reduce speedreduce speed

10 km / h less is a saving of three to five liters of fuel on 500 km and 12 kg of CO 2 less in the atmosphere . And it’s not much longer: you only lose four minutes on a 100-kilometer highway route. It must be known that consumption is increasing exponentially: it doubles from 40 to 80 km / h.

2. Anticipate braking

Many motorists still tend to accelerate quickly seeing a green light , even to pound before it turns red. Absurd because it generates unnecessary overconsumption. It should also be noted that many municipalities have adopted a “moderate green wave” system in such a way that reducing its speed to 35 km / h or 40 km / h makes it possible to pass all the green lights without stopping. Similarly, no need to “stick” the car ahead in a traffic jam as soon as the line moves a little. You can just let your car roll up by lifting the foot of the accelerator … which consumes zero fuel.

3. Limit small trips

40% of trips by car are less than two kilometers. However, it is precisely these first two kilometers which are the most polluting and the most expensive: overconsumption reaches 45% on the first kilometer, 25% on the second. Since catalytic converters do not operate optimally in the cold, their CO 2 and nitrogen oxide emissions are also increased .

4. Park in the shade

Even when stopped, your car can make you consume more! Indeed, a vehicle parked in full sun will be longer to cool and we will tend to put the air conditioning thoroughly starting. In addition, some of the fuel can evaporate under the effect of heat . In principle, an activated carbon cartridge is supposed to recover gasoline vapor, but some can escape through the tank vent, piping or plastic parts of the fuel system. At startup, cold gasoline entering a motor that has been heated in the sun will also evaporate faster and lead to overconsumption.

5. Use the cruise control … wisely

In addition to the comfort and peace of mind it provides (no fear of being flashed by a radar), the cruise control avoids unnecessary acceleration and slowdowns and therefore reduce consumption. It also increases safety, since the driver no longer has the eye on the meter. These benefits are especially valuable for regular courses. In the mountains or winding roads, the cruise control will force the car to accelerate to maintain speed. To consume as little as possible in a hilly course, you have to reduce the speed on the climbs and let go of the accelerator downhill, while remaining on the greatest possible ratio.

6. Move up the gear as soon as possible

Many motorists have taken the bad habit of letting their vehicle gradually increase the pace on the top gear, then downshift and press hard on the accelerator to enjoy good times. However, it is the engine that determines fuel consumption: for the most economical driving possible, the top gear must be engaged before 2,500 laps on a petrol car and 2,000 laps on diesel cars.

7. Choose your tires and check the pressure

Underinflated tires cause an increase in rolling resistance and therefore a fuel consumption of 2.4% per 0.5 bar . They are also dangerous because they degrade the quality of handling and can even explode. For long journeys, it is recommended to over-inflate the tires by 0.2 bar, especially if the car is loaded. Namely that there are tires “low consumption” reducing the rolling resistance. Michelin’s Energy Saver tire  saves one liter of fuel every 200 kilometers.

8. Lighten the vehicle and do not refuel

To think about before buying a car: fuel consumption increases by 7% when the vehicle weighs up to 100 kg. Even if you have a light car, consider getting rid of all unnecessary items. Another tip, do not refuel systematically because each liter of fuel represents as many kilograms to carry. Similarly, get rid of trunks , roof racks, bike racks and ski racks when they are not in use: they cause overconsumption of 10 to 20% due to loss of aerodynamics. It is better to prefer trailers and bike carriers in the back.

9. Put the air conditioning only on highway

Almost all cars today have air conditioning, and it has become almost a reflex when it’s hot. However, the air conditioning consumes up to an extra liter to 100 km / h. When driving at low speed, it is better to open the windows to cool off. On the other hand, when a certain speed is exceeded, the overconsumption caused by the aerodynamic drag of the open windows exceeds that of the air conditioning.

10. Shut off the engine

The  Stop and Start system , which switches off the ignition as soon as the speed drops below 5 km / h, is becoming common on new vehicles. According to the manufacturers, it can save up to 8%. In reality, this figure is only valid if you drive mainly in the city with a lot of traffic jams; in real conditions, it is rather around 3%. This being the case, the principle remains valid all the more as modern starters and batteries perfectly support frequent starts.

Finally, remember that the best way to save money is to leave your car in the garage . Take the carpool reflex , either for long journeys or to get to work: you will not only save money but you will help to streamline traffic and reduce pollution.

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