Fuel economy is something people look out for when they want to buy cars because it is such a very important factor. Not long ago, we wrote an article on the top cars with best fuel economy because we understand how important fuel consumption/economy is in motor cars.
This might be difficult when buying used cars because, even the even the most fuel efficient car may have has several faults and gone through a lot that it starts to consume fuel excessively. In this post, we will share with you those factors that contribute to fuel wastage in cars and tips that you use to save fuel.
Common Wasters Of Fuel In Cars (With Saving Tips)
The following are the common fuel wasters in vehicles that many people don’t even know about. They can easily be solved with the usual car maintenance. Unfortunately, many of us don’t take our cars for checks and regular maintenance (except the usual engine servicing).
Let me start first of all by telling you to be watchful of the filling station where you buy fuel. I don’t want to start mentioning names now but fuel quantity and quality of some filling stations are very poor in this country. Fuel of N9,000 will fill my tank at some stations but will be far from the full tank mark when I buy in other filling stations.
Also, fuel from different sources tend to burn out at considerably different rates. I have noticed it when I my route was just the same over a period of one year.
1. Low or Under-inflated tyres & Bad Wheel Alignment:
This may appear unlikely to many but the truth of the matter is that under-inflate tyres and incorrect wheel alignment can increase rolling resistance of tyres. This condition can cost you a mile or two per gallon on a car that normally delivers 20 miles per gallon of fuel.
Gauge your tyres often and inflate them if need be. Bad wheel alignment should be fixed as soon as possible. These factors not only affect fuel consumption but also safety and tyre life. In countries like Nigeria where people buy used tyres, it is good to check factors such as the tyre ratings and year of manufacture. You can check the meaning of all the numbers on car tyres here.
2. Keeping Your Air Filter Clean
When air filter is full of dirt and dusts, it gets clogged. This chokes off air and creates a condition that is called a “rich” mixture – too much gas being burned for the amount of air, which both wastes gas and causes the engine to lose power.
Experts have shown that replacing a clogged air filter can improve gas mileage by as much as 10 percent. This is not small at all.
3. Check And Replace Spark Plugs
You need to check your spark plugs regularly and replace them if they are dirty. Depending on your type of car, you can have spark plugs ranging from four to eight. Sparking of plugs result in a lot of heat, electrical and chemical erosion. A dirty spark plug causes misfiring and that wastes fuel.
4. Fix your own driving habits too
Yes, you too can contribute a lot to fuel wastage. Idling gives you 0 miles per gallon, please avoid it. Turn your engine off if you are going to be stopped in traffic for 15 seconds or longer. If you park your car waiting for someone, turn off the engine. I have seen people leave the engine on while waiting for people, you can save fuel by turning it off.
5. Don’t carry Stuffs About
You should avoid carrying unnecessary items in the booth of your car, especially if they are heavy. If you are not a delivery guy, why waste fuel carrying loads. I have a friend that is guilty of this. He’d get 25 to life if this was a crime. Do you know that an extra 45kg in the trunk reduces a typical car’s fuel economy by 1-2 percent.
6. Car Maintenance As It Affects Fuel Economy
Regularly changing your motor oil can also help save your fuel. Dirty oil can reduce fuel economy up to 1.6km per 3.79Liters! Take your vehicle for regular schedules brake inspections and maintenance as dragging brakes can waste car fuel.
These tips will help you save considerable fuel if you follow them and adjust your driving habits too.