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How to Save Petrol Money And Be A Greener Driver

Tuesday, 5th April 2011

According to today's figures from the RAC, 'Soaring world oil prices have already wiped out the 1p fuel duty cut announced in the Budget'. RAC motoring strategist Adrian Tink said: "Prices are continuing to spiral upwards with no end in sight to the high prices" (source: Press Association).

The recent increases in the price of petrol have been alarming. A few pence here or there doesn't seem to make a great difference initially, but nowadays most people are really feeling the pinch (remember a short time ago when unleaded was under a pound a litre?).

Fortunately there are simple steps we can all take to help save money on petrol and give ourselves a pat on the back for being greener. You don't have to Jeremy Clarkson to enjoy driving - most of us are not quite ready to completely ditch our cars in favour of cycling or public transport. The good news is that by following some simple fuel-saving measures, you could reduce your fuel bill by around 10%.


Ten easy ways to cut your petrol bill

Avoid driving short distances – OK, so it's very tempting to just jump in the car and nip to the nearby shops. But all those very short journeys add up and you could soon notice the difference to your wallet (and your waistline?) if you walked instead.

Plan ahead – before you set off find out if there are going to be any roadworks or excessive traffic en route. Sat navs can also help – some even have an eco-driving setting.

Check fuel prices online – There are a few online resources available for comparing local prices before you head out in the car.

Check your tyres – Planning ahead also involves making sure the tyres are at the correct pressure - do this about once a month when they are cold. Under-inflated can increase fuel consumption by 3%.

Turn off the engine! - If you're at an actual stand still in a traffic jam, or at a level crossing, it is worth switching off the engine altogether to save fuel.

Remove excess car weight – You might not always be able to remove your partner/family from the car, but you can remove all the unnecessary bits and bobs you have in the boot. Excess weight means the car uses more fuel.

Make you car aerodynamic - Remove roof racks and boxes when not in use. Close the car windows. Less resistance = less fuel usage. Go faster stripes are optional.

Keep air con use to a minimum – Air conditioning can eat up fuel, so use as little as possible.

Keep to the speed limit – There are other obvious benefits to doing this, but dropping down from 85 MPG to 70 or 60 MPG can make a significant saving on petrol.

Improve your driving habits – reading the road ahead is an all important measure in being economical with fuel. Excess breaking and acceleration have a considerable negative impact on your car's MPG. Keep the rev count down. Consider taking an advanced driving course like Pass Plus – this is also likely to save money on car insurance so it's win win.

(Press Association Article)