Table of Contents
- Accelerate gently
- Drive at a constant speed
- Minimise idle time
- Rethink your AC use
- Travel light
- Keep your tyres inflated
- Maintain your car
- Buy a fuel efficient vehicle
Filling up your car with petrol or diesel can be one of the biggest ongoing costs of owning a car – especially when the fuel prices are high.
You can use a fuel app to help you find the best prices nearby or snap up discounts when you can – but it also pays to know the ins and outs of fuel-efficient driving. Knowing how to save fuel when driving can help you get more out of your tank.
You might not be able to control the price of fuel, but thankfully there are plenty of things you can do to make your driving more fuel efficient.
Here are our top tips on how to save fuel when driving.
1. Accelerate gently
Fast acceleration is one of the biggest fuel guzzlers. When taking off from a stationary position, take it easy rather than pressing your foot down. Drive safely and smoothly, rather than aggressively.
Aggressive driving isn't just bad for your car's health – it'll also burn through your fuel faster. In addition to accelerating gently, stick to the speed limit and use your gears properly for better fuel efficiency.
What is the best speed to save fuel?
The most fuel efficient speed is around 80km/h, although this can change depending on the type of vehicle you're driving and the driving conditions. Never drive above the speed limit.
Which gear is most fuel efficient?
To maximise your car's fuel efficiency, use the highest gear possible in the given speed limit. Using lower gears can burn through fuel faster, but taking corners in a high gear can also reduce fuel economy.
2. Drive at a constant speed
Driving at a constant speed is more fuel efficient than stop-start driving. You'll burn through more fuel by speeding up only to brake and come to a stop a short distance later.
Instead, keep a safe distance between your vehicle and the car in front so you can better predict traffic and avoid coming to a stop. If you're driving on flat terrain, use cruise control to maintain a constant speed and improve fuel efficiency.
3. Minimise idle time
Don't leave your engine running if you're going to be stationary for a while. Even though you're not moving, your car will be consuming fuel while it's idling. Instead, switch off the engine while you wait and turn it on again when you're ready to go.
4. Rethink your AC use
Running your air conditioner will increase fuel consumption, but increasing the temperature even a few degrees can improve efficiency. Your AC won't have to work as hard at 24 degrees compared to 18 degrees.
Better yet, if it's a nice day consider switching your air conditioner off, putting your windows down and making the most of the fresh air. This is best for driving around town at lower speeds.
For high speed driving on the open road, open windows can cause turbulence and eat up more fuel, so using your air conditioner in these circumstances is often more efficient.
5. Travel light
Carrying excess luggage in your car can increase fuel consumption. So unless you're planning on using the golf clubs, surfboard or picnic basket in your boot – consider leaving them behind when you drive.
Another great tip for how to save fuel when driving is to take off your roof racks and bike racks when you're not using them. Anything on your roof will reduce the aerodynamics of your car and therefore its fuel economy as well.
6. Keep your tyres inflated
Keeping your tyres inflated to the maximum pressure will reduce rolling resistance and fuel consumption. Plus, it'll protect your tyres and help them last longer.
You should check your tyre pressure at least once a month, preferably when the tyres are cold – for example, the first thing before you drive to work or head off on a long trip. Check inside the driver's door or in the owner's manual for the correct pressure.
7. Maintain your car
Taking your car in for a regular service is the best way to keep it running properly and efficiently. Well maintained cars are more fuel efficient. Even simple maintenance – like replacing a dirty air filter or changing the engine oil – can help improve your car's fuel efficiency.
If you're driving a Mazda, we recommend a Mazda genuine service so that your car gets the best service possible. Mazda genuine mechanics have the skills and experience to handle Mazda vehicles inside and out – which means they know exactly how to keep your car in tune and running efficiently.
8. Buy a fuel efficient vehicle
Our top tip for how to save fuel and money in the long run is to buy a more fuel efficient car. New cars tend to have more fuel efficient designs compared to used cars – however it's important to check the specifications and compare models when shopping.
The Mazda 2 is one of the most fuel efficient cars on the market, rated at 5.3L/100km. Featuring an evolved Skyactiv-G 1.5L engine, you'll get all the zoom zoom you need with impressive fuel efficiency and reduced emissions.
Book in a test drive – or come on down to the Melville Mazda showroom to discover our latest deals.