How to Save Petrol, Save Money and Save the World!

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Introduction: How to Save Petrol, Save Money and Save the World!

Petrol is getting really rediculously expensive these days and scientists say that if we don't do something to reduce carbon emissions within 5 years,permanent climatic change would have taken place.If i had my way i'd buy an electric car tomorrow but unfortunatly im still a student.

Here are some methods i use to get 50% more fuel efficiency out of my 2 litre diesel toyota.It sounds impossible to get 50 whole more percent but the internal combustion engine and the way we deliver the power to the wheels is extremely inefficient process, but it is easily achievable.

Before i started driving more efficiently i used to get about 10miles to the litre and now i get about 15 to 16miles per litre.It sounds like nothing extra but do the maths.

previous fuel consumtion at 10m/l = 200miles per 20 litres
new fuel consumption at 15m/l = 300miles per 20litres

so i get another 100miles "from nothing"!

Only about 20% of all the energy in petrol or diesel is converted to motion, the rest is wasted in heat, vibration, noise, which i think is just not good enough and thats why i think that the internal combustion engine is an old technology in need of retirement or at least semi retirement and used in hybrids.

There are 5 steps to increasing fuel effiency:

Resistance
Momentum
Acceleration
Weight
Drivers Attitude
Velocity or speed

Step 1: Resistance

Resistance on a motor vehicle is broken down into two different forms:Roling resistance and air resistance..

To reduce rolling resistance:

I always fill my tires to their maximum inflation pressure or maybe about 2 psi under,the higher the pressure the less surface area in contact with the road and therefore the less resistance therefore the less energy required to move the car along.The negative side to this is to fill the tyres with too much air,and the life of the tyre will be reduced because it will wear out in the middle of the tread so you need a good balance(usually about 2 psi under the max pressure printed on the tyre)This will probably increase overall efficiency by about 5-10 percent.

To reduce air resistance:

There isn't really much you can do to affect this one because as we all know the vehicle is a fixed shape and we cannot change it.But if say you have roof racks on the car,this can effect the resistance a surprising amount so take them off when not in use.Also a shark fin low profile type aerial is more efficient than a stalk aerial.Taking these off will increase overall efficiency by probably 5%.

Step 2: Momentum

This one takes a while to get used to,you basically have to change the whole way you drive.It basically involves using your breaks as little as possible and keeping the car moving.It also makes you a much more careful driver because you have to plan ahead.Slowing down with your gears helps amazingly, because apparently modern IC engines use NO fuel when doing this.This saves quite a bit of petrol.

Step 3: Acceleration

Most people just race off from a traffic light or from a stop without giving it much thought at all.But the slower you accelerate the less fuel you burn, whats the rush anyway, you'll probably only get to your destination a few minutes earlier and more dangerously anyway.a=(v-u)/t so if u spend a longer time climbing to a speed versus a shorter time your acceleration will be less and fuel consumption is greatly reduced.Once i discovered this i started saving petrol like you cannot believe.

Step 4: Weight

This one is pretty obvious.Take all the excess shit out your car that you don't need.less weight,less energy for the engine to have to put into the car to make it move, simple as tomato paste on bread.

Step 5: Driving Attitude

This is definatly THE most influential factor when saving fuel.The mood you're in greatly influences how you drive.Drive slower and allow more time for your journey (get up 5 minutes earlier)accelerate slower break less and use your gears to slow down you'll be amazed how much fuel you can save.

Step 6: Velocity

Velocity or speed is the final factor.

Did you know that if you double your speed, you quadruple your drag due to air resistance, yes, its exponential.so go slower.I travel at a maximum of 40 mph(or the lowest speed you can go in the highest gear you have)40mph might be a bit rediculous for some but even reducing your speed 10 or 20 mph can drastically save fuel.anything over 60mph basically just wastes fuel.

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41 Comments

best thing you can do to your vehicle to save fuel: adjust the nut behind the wheel!

my dad uses a fuel magnet it increased his mpg my 17 mpg before it was 30 mpg now its around 40 to 50

If you save 50% with all those tips you must have been driving like a lunatic before you used them. Normally you will save around 24%.

I am using automatic transmission car...though my car fuel consumption is significantly low,I want to reduced it further...are your tips aplicable for my car as well or it just for manual transmission cars only....

I have always took it easy on the car, like letting my foot off the gas and coasting to stop signs. Plus i own a motorcycle which really saves on alot on gas in the summer months. But doing 40 mph is quite hard living around a city trying to get home on the freeway, heck you'll get run over. Driving a hybrid car would be a better option.

Sheesh, peeps, get a friggin hybrid! It may increase smug levels, and you can't help loving the smell of your own farts, but it's worth it (if you watch south park, you'll know what i mean) but don't be gay and get a Priass, get a camry hybrid (unless you're a mpg fanatic, then buy a Prius. Yes.)

Hybrids? What? I drive a 1991 Honda CR-X I got for $2000, and i get 45 mpg roughly following the steps above, better than many hybrids get. Cheap and fun to drive, too. There are lots of older cars that get great gas mileage, I actually don't know why new cars get such terrible mileage, but if you just research and look around you can find a good, reliable, affordable car for about one tenth what a new hybrid costs.

not all of us have tens of thousands of dollars to put into a friggin hybrid! On top of that, hybrids only use the electric motor up to about 20 mph. This will only affect the initial acceleration. This does help alot, but how long do you have to drive a car like that to get enough benefit to make up for the thousands of dollar spent on a hybrid compared to the gasoline model??

ah, touche, uberchoob. not all of us have a boatload of $$$ to spend, and i think the ev mode kicks into gasoline at 42 mph. about your bit on how long it'd take to offset the cash spent; it's kinda like a solar powered house..if you want to be cool 'n casual when you drive (driving like a normal gas car) it might take longer, but if you want to hypermile (constantly using ev mode and pissing ppl off in the process, and maybe, just maybe, getting shot for being a stick in the mud), then it will definitely be less of a wait. i hope to try hydrogen fuel cell or biodiesel cars when they come out, as i already know how to make biodiesel. and totally_screwed is right, nitrogen improves fuel efficiency because it lasts longer, and it doesn't change with the weather (shrinking when the weather is cold, expanding in heat, so it's less wear and tear on the tires AND your wallet) sorry if this was too long of a response, but i was answering your question properly and trying not to type like a drunken 4th grade rockstar. Arrivederci!

Where do you live? Your English is interesting =)