Tips For Saving Fuel During Summer Holiday Driving

With the summer holidays in full swing, and families preparing for their summer holiday vacations here in the UK and abroad, drivers are being reminded by Transport Minister Norman Baker that with smart driving techniques, it is easy to make savings on fuel consumption.

Smarter driving techniques include simple things like smooth driving, changing gears at the correct time and removing everything from the car that won't be required. By following these simple ideas, drivers could save 8%, or even more, on their fuel costs.

Norman Baker said: "For many families, the annual holiday will be the longest trip they make all year. Applying the simple smarter driving techniques could make a real difference to fuel costs. In a single 500 mile trip, you could save £10 - certainly enough for a few extra ice creams to keep the kids happy!"

Advice and Tips For Saving Fuel During Summer Holiday Driving

Check your tyre pressures. Check your tyre pressures before you leave home. Tyres which are underinflated are not only dangerous but will also increase fuel consumption. Tyre pressures should be regularly checked throughout the year and particularly if a long journey with a heavily loaded car is ahead of you as this will put additional stress on your tyres.

Watch your speed. Fuel consumption increases dramatically with speed. For example, at 85mph a car uses around 25% more fuel than at 70mph, and at 70mph approximately 10% more than at 60mph. So by leaving try in plenty of time for your journey, and considering breaking a long journey overnight, and taking plenty of on-board entertainment for the kids will all help to reduce the pressure of arrive quickly.

Consider your use of roof racks and roof boxes. At motorway speeds, a roof box can increase fuel consumption by around 25%. So if you're using a roof box it's particularly important to try to keep your speed down. Once you have reached your destination, it is worth considering taking the box off if it won't be needed until your return journey.

Avoid congestion. Traffic jams can be stressful and will also increase fuel consumption. So with good planning, it may be possible to avoid travelling at times when traffic is likely to be particularly heavy - such as Friday afternoons or the first day of the school holiday.

Other key tips that apply year-round:

  • When accelerating, change up through the gears early, usually by 2000rpm.
  • When driving in town, most fuel is used in accelerating a vehicle so try to anticipate well ahead and drive as smoothly as possible to avoid unnecessary acceleration and braking.
  • Drivers could brush up on their smarter driving techniques with a quick lesson. Many driving instructors and schools now offer smarter driving, or eco-driving, training to experienced drivers.
26 July 2011 Staff

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