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Fuel Saving Tips From MTA

Friday 11 June 2004

Fuel Saving Tips From MTA

Oil prices are continuing to fluctuate and advice from oil industry analysts is that in spite of increased OPEC production we shouldn't look forward to significantly lower petrol prices any time in the future. The best way for consumers to stay in control of fuel costs is to reduce the amount of fuel they use, says the Motor Trade Association (MTA).

The way you drive and how your vehicle is maintained has can have an effect on how much fuel you use. Here are some ways to reduce fuel usage from MTA:

Have your vehicle serviced regularly by a qualified professional. An engine that is less than efficient will have to work harder and will, therefore, burn more fuel. A poorly maintained engine can increase fuel consumption by 10 to 20 percent. A clogged air filter alone can cause up to a 10 percent increase.

Ensure that tyres are inflated properly, inadequately inflated tyres require more energy to roll, which not only wastes fuel but also wears the tyres faster. Check your vehicle's tyre pressures at least once a month, when the tyres are cold.

Keep loading in your vehicle to a minimum, the heavier your vehicle the more fuel you’ll use, so try not to store things you don’t need in or on your car. A loaded roof rack can decrease a car's fuel efficiency by 5 percent.

Use your vehicle efficiently. Smooth acceleration, cornering, and braking not only save fuel but also extend the life of the engine, transmission, brakes, and tyres. Once up to speed, maintain a smooth steady pace in top gear by anticipating manoeuvres and minimising stop-start situations. And if you have air conditioning, use it only when you really need it. Running the air conditioner uses power from the engine and additional fuel.

Don't let the engine run at idle any longer than necessary. After starting the car in the morning, begin driving right away; don't let it sit and "warm up" for several minutes. An engine actually warms up faster while driving. It's also better for the environment.

Remember the best way to ensure your vehicle is not using too much fuel is to have it serviced regularly, preventing any problems before they occur. If you sense any unusual sounds, smells, or vibrations take your car into your local MTA repairer.


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