When it comes to our cars, we should all try and be a bit greener. Not only is it because of the apparently imminent climate crisis that seems to be growing in threat every single day. But greener driving is also a great way to save some money.
But not everyone can afford to change their car for a nice new hybrid or electric vehicle. In fact, while we may like the prospect of getting into a lean, green, eco-friendly machine, it could be out of our price range, especially as it’s the more recent models that have the better technology inside of them.
So we’ve put our heads together and come up with a list of 7 driving hacks that will help you become a greener driver. A few simple things that you can do to lessen your carbon footprint (and also add to your wallet!).
One of the biggest waste of fuels and causes of emissions is by erratic or heavy driving. When you stop at the traffic lights, are you patiently waiting for the lights to turn green? Or are you sitting there revving your engine, like Lewis Hamilton on the starting grid? Accelerating quickly from a starting position, or being heavy on the pedal as you drive, will quickly burn through the petrol in the tank.
The same occurs when you brake sharply. Having to decelerate quickly means you were driving too fast in the first place, and so you end up wasting all that fuel spent getting up to speed in the first place.
Driving more smoothly and not as if you are at Silverstone will mean you will be burning less petrol.
Of course, one way to save on fuel and reduce your carbon emissions is to take advantage of a car share scheme. Whether your company is big or small, you can help reduce the amount of money you spend on petrol by car sharing.
Big companies might have a scheme in place already, connecting those who want to car share with others. If not, why not ask around yourself, either through your company’s group chat or social media. Either alternate who drives each day so that you take it in turns, or have a designated driver and pay them some petrol money.
If your company is smaller, why not take a look at local businesses around you? If you work in a town or on a business park, chances are there are people there who live near you, who would benefit from a car share scheme. You should also take a look online and on social media, as there are dedicated websites and facebook groups that can help you find someone to share with.
Another big cause of wasted petrol is aimless driving. We do tend to rely on technology these days, but it can lead us to take obscure or strange routes to our destination. But even with a map, it might only take us to the general area we’re heading, and not to the exact address.
Take a look before you travel and find out the exact place your going. And, if you aren’t relying on a Sat Nav device, check the route yourself. You can google the address you want and be presented with a number of routes to choose from, including how long they take and any roadworks along the way.
Some roads and cities are notorious for congestion. Certain times of day in particular can turn busy roads into car parks. All those cars idling away are a big cause of emission problems. They are also burning up their petrol and, if you are one of the poor souls stuck in the jam, you will be breathing in a lot of the fumes.
Whenever you travel, listen out to the local radio traffic updates who can notify you of any hotspots to avoid. If you are going somewhere and know that there is a big jam ahead, why not delay your journey until the congestion eases. If that isn’t possible, have a look for an alternative route.
Having a good idea of where you are going to park can save you a lot of wasted petrol driving around searching for a space. Take a look online or ask someone with local knowledge. They can point you to a spot with lots of spaces, or somewhere that’s free to park.
There are now even specialist websites that will let you use a stranger’s parking space like it was an Air BnB. A little bit of research can save you driving around wasting your petrol.
How efficient is your car’s engine? Even if it’s an older model, it has long been a desire by car companies to produce the most efficient engines possible. But over time, a car’s engine becomes less productive due to wear and tear, and also dirt and grime. Having your car serviced regularly will help keep your engine running more smoothly, so you won’t be wasting as much petrol as your engine tries to keep up with your driving.
It’s not just F1 and motorsport drivers who need to keep their car as light and nimble as possible. If you are driving around with an empty roof or bike rack, or have a load of heavy tools or leisure equipment in the back of your car, you are going to be wasting fuel transporting it.
We’re not saying you need to be driving around in just a single car seat, having removed all excess weight. But removing anything you don’t need in the car, and reducing things on the exterior of the car that cause drag, means you will be wasting less fuel.
The more modern your car is, the more efficient it’s going to be. So one of the best ways to go greener is to upgrade your vehicle to a newer model. Creditplus can help you spread the cost across manageable monthly payments. Find out more by applying online today.