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Consumer Expert Shares Hacks For Saving £65 On Petrol Bill

ImogenGroome
September 28, 2021, 1:00 PM
  • Drivers are feeling the pinch as petrol stations run dry and fuel is in short supply
  • Google searches for saving fuel while driving have increased by 500% in the last week
  • Consumer expert Tom Church shares 8 tips for saving over £65 on your petrol bill every year

As drivers across the UK experience a struggle to fill up their cars due to fuel shortages, Google searches for tips on how to save fuel while driving have skyrocketed.

The crisis began after BP revealed last week that it would need to temporarily close some of its petrol stations due to a shortage of lorry drivers, which led to car owners racing to panic buy fuel.

Consumer expert Tom Church reveals eight tips to save money on fuel and make a tank last longer.

Check your tyre pressures

This short and simple task may be easy to ignore, but getting it done regularly will pay off in the long term. According to the RAC, tyres which are under-inflated by just 15psi can use 6% more fuel, and this level of underinflation isn’t noticeable from just a quick glance. To put this figure into context, those who keep their tyres inflated just this much more will be able to get an additional 26 miles from a 60 litre tank of fuel. Based on average prices for a litre of diesel, this can save up to £65 on your annual fuel bill!

Don’t use the air conditioning or heating

If you’re going to freeze or overheat, then using these features is obviously essential, but there are plenty of situations where they can be avoided. By wearing an additional layer of clothing in cold weather and rolling down the windows in the summer months, you can avoid putting additional strain on the engine - which will burn more fuel, especially if you’re driving at lower speeds.

Get a fuel efficient vehicle

Statistics from the Department for Transport reveal that the fuel consumption of cars which are similar in size can vary by 45% - a much bigger figure than you might expect. By carefully choosing a vehicle which is more fuel efficient, your annual bill will go down dramatically. If you’re in the market for a new car and want to pick one which will save you money on fuel, try using online comparison calculators from Next Green Car or Green Car Guide.

Learn to drive economically

Driving tests these days will include feedback on a driver’s ability to drive economically, but this may not be a skill for those who haven’t taken a test or driving course recently. By taking an advanced driving course, you can learn how to adjust your driving style to make it more economical. Methods can include driving smoothly, accelerating gently, being increasingly aware of hazards to avoid unnecessary brakes and keeping rolling where possible so you don’t stop then start again as often.

Look into fuel efficient tyres

According to National, 20% of a car’s fuel consumption comes from the tyre. Those who want to reduce their fuel consumption can do so by choosing tyres which have a lower rolling resistance. These energy efficient tyres will typically result in the driver getting a higher mileage out of their vehicle - with National predicting that energy saving tyres can save up to 440 litres of fuel over the tyre’s lifetime.

Find out if you really need premium fuel

Most of us will have noticed the extra fuel pumps at petrol stations which indicate that Premium, Ultra, Super or similar fuel is available. While the price may be off-putting for some, as it typically costs more than regular unleaded and diesel, others may consider that the higher price might be worth it if it’s more economical. However, the reality is that your vehicle may not get any benefit out of premium fuel. This style of fuel is recommended for performance cars, so do your research and find out whether or not you’d be wasting your money.

Shop around for fuel cashback deals

If you’re in the market for a new credit card, or you’re looking at making your store loyalty cards work for you, why not find a provider which offers fuel cashback benefits? For example, the Santander 123 credit card offers 3% cash back at all major petrol stations, while the Tesco Clubcard offers five points for every £4 spent on Tesco fuel.

Take care when the car is cold

Make sure you drive slowly when the car is just starting to warm up, as cold engines are less efficient. If you floor it from the get-go, you’ll be wasting fuel and putting pressure on the engine which will wear it out much more easily. A similar effect will come from leaving the energy to idle. Older drivers may be used to letting their cars ‘warm up’, but this is no longer essential as modern cars have been created so they will run from the moment they’re started.

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Comments
morkdavid
morkdavid2 weeks ago

Pretty sure the heating is just what the engine produces, it either goes in the car or outside, using it won't use more fuel.

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