The mileage of a car is the miles or kilometres that the car can travel using one gallon or one litre of petrol. For Indian cars, the mileage is represented in km/l.
When the car is right out of the showroom the mileage remains intact and it deteriorates as time goes by. Several factors affect the fuel efficiency of a car:
The hottest summers and coldest winters affect a car’s performance.
- Excessive Short Trips
The engine takes time to warm up and when the vehicle keeps moving for short distances, the engine loses its time to warm up and the mileage decreases.
- Heavy Braking During Acceleration
As aggressively as the gear is used, the faster the fuel is consumed.
- High Vehicle Weight
The more the weight, the harder the engine has to toil and the lesser the fuel efficiency becomes.
The faster the car travels, the more fuel consumption thus reducing the mileage.
The petrol prices are skyrocketing and our vehicles must give us better mileage as the fuel consumption will be lesser for a greater distance. Hence, here are a few tips that can ameliorate fuel efficiency:
- Coasting Technique
It’s a simple technique to hit two birds with one stone, i.e. it can save fuel consumption as well prevent brake wear. The more the acceleration, the more fuel is used and hence where acceleration is not necessary, we let the kinetic energy of the vehicle move it forward. For instance, if we notice a signal coming up, acceleration makes no sense, so we release the acceleration and let the kinetic energy take us to the signal. Using our anticipation and physics, fuel efficiency can be improvised.
- Keep Your Engine on Check
The engine should be maintained properly for lesser fuel usage. The air filters used in cars should be kept clean as a dirty, clogged air filter blocks airflow and the engine has to work harder to compensate for the minimal airflow thus consuming more petrol.
- Gentleness on the Throttle
A throttle is a device that provides power to the engine. An engine uses the most fuel for overcoming inertia and attaining high speeds from stationary. Therefore, smooth and slow acceleration is important and controls the force you give on your accelerator.
- Reduce the Vehicle Load
If the overall weight of the car is low, the lesser it strains the engine and lowers the fuel consumed. Carry heavy luggage only if you're going out of town or on a long trip. Store the stray bags at home and dispose of the trash immediately.
- Regular Servicing
Car owners are under the assumption that regular servicing costs more. The temporary cost can save a lot of money in fuel and in long-term engine replacements.
- Tyre Pressure
Tyres create a rolling resistance. If the resistance increases, the engine has to work more in moving the vehicle thus increasing the fuel consumption. So, it is necessary that we maintain the tyre pressure recommended by the manufacturer. Studies claim that maintaining the ideal tyre pressure increases fuel efficiency by 12-15%.
- Use Gears Correctly
We tend to either use low gears for high speeds or need to remember to reduce the gear while decreasing the speed. Using gears at the correct speed ensures higher efficiency.
- Plan the Route
Use apps such as Google Maps and check your route before departure. Select the route with either the shortest distance or the route with lesser stops even if the time taken is a few minutes more. This habit lessens stops and burns less fuel. Moreover, we can avoid driving in a rush or peak hours.
- Avoid Idling
When you have a stopping or a signal for more than 45 seconds, it is better to turn off the engine or ignition else unnecessary fuel is drawn.
- Keep your Windows Shut
At high speeds, closing the window and turning on the AC consumes less fuel than opening the windows. This is because cars are aerodynamically designed to cut through air when they are in motion, opening up windows leads to higher drag that ruins the mileage.
- Check the Auxiliary Parts
Other parts of your car except for the engine such as the air-conditioner, vipers etc. make up the auxiliary parts. Vipers needn’t be used unless there is heavy rain. Air-conditioners when not in use can save up to 30% of the fuel. On hot days it might be uncomfortable to drive without them, but for increasing the mileage sometimes it is alright to sweat.
The tips given above are effective and make your cars more fuel efficient as days go by. Happy and fun learning!