Cut the cost of your trip
After a year of staying so close to home, taking off on a long weekend motoring getaway or day trip sounds pretty appealing. And, while I can’t control petrol prices, I can offer some tips for a more economical ride.
Give your vehicle a wash. A dirty car has more wind resistance than a vehicle with clean surfaces. Mud caked on wheel arches can impact fuel efficiency.
Check your tyre pressures. If needed, inflate to the recommended level – this information is usually found on the vehicle door pillar.
Boot clean-out. You’ll need some gear but why not remove that spare cricket set? Extra weight makes your engine work harder.
Ditch the air-con. If the temperature is bearable without, leave it off.
Change your oil and air filter. Dirty oil lowers engine efficiency, as does a blocked filter.
Get in gear. If you drive a manual car – congratulations, you’re in the minority – then change into top gear as soon as possible, without unnecessarily overloading your engine.
Remove roof racks. If you don’t need them to cart bicycles or canoes, take them off and you might get a small boost in fuel efficiency.
Plan ahead. Think about your start and arrival times. If you can avoid traffic jams, that’ll trim your fuel bill.
But there’s something much more valuable than money: your life. So, drive cautiously and get home safely this long weekend.
Words: VACC CEO, Geoff Gwilym. As featured in the Herald Sun 5 March 2021.
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