Drive Smarter
 
Driving Tips That Can Save You Money
 
  1. Drive the speed limit. Driving the speed limit helps maximize fuel mileage. Using cruise control can help maintain a constant speed.


  2. Avoid stopping quickly. Quick starts and stops burns gas fast, costing you more money (not to mention being hard on your vehicle). Instead, take your foot off the accelerator and coast before stopping.


  3. Don't idle! Believe it or not, you are still burning fuel - up to 3.79L/hour. To help keep yourself from idling, avoid driving at rush hour, and turn your vehicle off if you are going to be stopped for more than 10 seconds.


  4. High Speed = A/C, Low Speed = Windows Down. Air conditioners and heaters are efficient during highway driving, but can increase your fuel consumption by up to 12% in stop-and-go traffic.


  5. Clean your car! Excess weight in your car contributes to fuel consumption. Remove any unnecessary items from your trunk, and save some fuel.


  6. Fill up before holidays and when it's cool out. Filling up three days before a holiday can save you a few cents on the price of gas at the pump. Cooler temperatures in the morning and evening create less vapour.


  7. Tighten the cap... but don't top off! Gas tanks need both fuel and fumes. Don't let fumes escape via a loose cap, and stop pumping once the pump shuts off automatically.


  8. Use the correct fuel grade. Follow the fuel recommendation in your driver's manual. Using a fuel with an octane level below the recommended grade can result in reduced power and fuel efficiency.


  9. Don't accelerate uphill. Try to build up speed before the incline and maintain it on the way up. To save on fuel, coast on your way downhill.


  10. Avoid rooftop carriers. Remove unused rooftop carriers (bike racks, roof racks), as they increase the aerodynamic drag of you vehicle and increase fuel consumption by 5%.
To learn more about driving efficiently visit Green Venture's EcoDriver site to book a free EcoDriver presentation for your group.    
 
Buying a New Car? - What to Look for in a Fuel Efficient Car
 
Natural Resource Canada provides a useful tool that allows car buyers to select different models, years and manufacturers and compare their fuel efficiency (new or used). To find the most fuel efficient vehicle for you, start comparing vehicles.
 
Maintenance Tips
 
  1. Read your owner's manual. A poorly maintained vehicle consumes up to 40% more fuel than a properly maintained one.


  2. Change your vehicle's oil regularly. Keep your engine properly lubricated in order to reduce fuel consumption and emit fewer emissions. Make sure to dispose of your oil properly.


  3. Replace a dirty air filter. Change your air filter as recommended. Inspect your filter in between changes by removing it and taping it on a hard surface. If dirt falls out replace it. Doing so can improve fuel efficiency by 10%.


  4. Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Take some time to check your tire pressure. Under-inflated tires can increase your fuel consumption by 4% and lead to reduced tire life spans.


  5. Watch your tire treads. Tires with treads worn down to the tread wear indicator should be replaced. This allows for normal handling of your vehicle resulting in more efficient fuel consumption.


  6. Keep your brakes in top shape. Unwanted drag caused by improperly maintained brakes can lead to more resistance and higher fuel consumption.


The best way to reduce fuel consumption and save money is to drive less. Many alternatives including public transit, car sharing, carpooling, biking, walking and working from home are available to help us achieve this.
 
The first 2 kilometers of a drive the catalytic converter and emission control system are not fully functioning. This creates untreated smog forming emissions. Try replacing highly polluting short car trips with an alternative mode of transportation such as biking or walking. Healthy commutes are not only good for the planet, but the wallet and our health too!
 
Ontario's Drive Clean Program is a mandatory vehicle emissions inspection and maintenance program. Through this program, vehicle emissions of smog-causing pollutants are reduced by requiring vehicles to undergo an emissions test to identify emissions problems and have them repaired. To determine if your vehicle needs an emissions test to renew your licence, or to find a testing location visit Drive Clean Program.


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