A few tips to saving fuel

Garwin Beukes - If there’s one thing that affects the daily driver, whether you’re a millionaire or just the average Joe- it’s the price of fuel. Today we’ll cover a few simple tricks you can adapt into your daily routine that will help you save fuel (and money) when filling up at the petrol station.

Even though these recommendations may seem to slight to make an immediate effect, in the long run sticking to them will make the difference on your fleet's fuel consumption, not to mention the positive impact they will have on your wallet.

Fill up early in the morning

Fill up early in the morning when temperatures are low and it is cooler outside.

Station tanks are often exposed to sunlight during the day. When temperatures are low, fuel density is lower. As the day goes on and temperatures increase, fuel is subject to a dilation process. This means if you attempt to fill up after lunch or in the afternoon, a litre of fuel is not an exact litre of fuel.

Fuel density and temperatureplay an essential role in the petrol industry and should be key aspects to consider in your fuel saving strategy.

Avoid falling below half a tank

Filling up on an almost empty tank can cause fuel to evaporate quickly, forcing you to make frequent trips to the petrol station. A full or half-full tank will decrease the amount of trapped oxygen, thus lessening the chance for evaporation.

Storage tanks at petrol stations have internal floating roofs that prevent contact between fuel and airto reduce evaporation.

Meaning, you lose a bit of petrol every time you go to a filling station, making daily trips will make you lose out on quite a lot per month.

Skip the petrol station when tanks are being refilled

When a petrol station's tanks are being refilled, the sediment inside can be stirred up. Filling up while the service truck is operating, can result in some of the settled dirt to go straight into your vehicle's tank and cause a certain level of damage.

Don't drive in the rush hour

There are few worse places to spend your time than stuck in a traffic jam, but it's also a very expensive way of travelling. Every time that you stop and start in traffic, your car needs first gear and a huge amount of fuel to get moving again. Second gear is not much better. The best solution is to not travel during the rush hour. You can also save some fuel by trying to understand what the traffic is doing in front of you, and travelling steadily at a slow speed, rather than accelerating and braking.

Turn the air-conditioning off

It's tempting to leave the air-con on the whole year round. It stops the windows misting up in the winter and you don't ever need to think about the temperature inside the car, but it uses quite a bit of fuel, so we'd advise you turn it off when it's not that hot. Make use of your car's windows!

Accelerate smoothly

The perfect way to travel is at a constant speed (ideally around 60- 100kph), and in the highest gear that your car has available.

So if you're a patient driver, you'll have lower fuel bills - it's as simple as that. It's unrealistic to avoid overtaking, but there's little point accelerating past a car to simply be in front of it at the next set of lights.