5 Ways to make your full fuel tank last longer

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fuel - economicalfuel - economical


5 Ways to make your full fuel tank last longer

The fuel price in South Africa is continuing to rise and vehicle owners are struggling to get to where they need to be as their budgets are constantly being reshuffled to squeeze an extra few litres of fuel into their tanks.   

While you cannot control the price of fuel, there are ways to make your full fuel tanks last longer and carry you and your car further. These fuel-saving methods relate to the type of car you drive, the type of driver you are and how you care for your car.


Buy an economical car

The best way to have your fuel last longer is by buying an economical vehicle from a pre-owned vehicle dealership. Your typical fuel economical cars are compact, lightweight, affordable and have a low engine capacity. Any car with a 1.2-litre (or above) engine, will be heavier on fuel and your pocket.

The most economical cars are usually 1.0 litre with a possible turbo and cruise control. When you visit your nearest car dealership in Gauteng, look for one of the following cars if you want to ensure a fuel-friendly investment:

  • Chevrolet Spark
  • Ford Focus EcoBoost or Fiesta
  • Toyota Camry, Yaris or Corolla
  • Hyundai Elantra

While those are some of the top fuel-efficient cars in the country, if you follow the principle of a smaller engine, you’re likely to go further with your fuel tank.


Keep your tyres pumped up

You might not realise it, but the pressure of your tyres can affect how much fuel your car burns to drive. There’s a reason why car manufacturers place the correct and recommended tyre pressure on the car itself – usually on the inside of the driver’s door.

If you pump up your tyres too much, you run the risk of wearing out your tyre tread sooner or overheating the rubber. Likewise, if your tyres are under-inflated, there is a higher rolling resistance which is what requires more fuel. Flat tyres make your engine work harder and your fuel burn faster. An easy solution is to have your tyres pumped up to the correct pressure every time you drive into a petrol station. Add it to the list of checks along with your oil and water and always have a spare tyre available in the boot of your car.

If you find that some of your tyres are well under pressure compared to the rest, you should take your car to a tyre specialist so that they can check for, and seal, any slow punctures. It’s also the safer option to not drive with flat tyres.


Don’t rev your vehicle

We’ve all had a “Fast and Furious” moment in our cars where we pull away from a traffic light, revving our engines and at a speed that will put us in front for the merging lanes ahead. But all that revving your engine does is burn extra fuel.

If you want to save fuel, control the urge to speed up to the speed limit as soon as possible. When you’re driving like that in towns and cities with stop streets, speed bumps and traffic lights around every corner, your poor engine has to burn through excessive amounts of fuel. You need to pull away from a complete stop the same way you did as learner driver practising for their driver’s license test.

Slow and steady might seem a waste of time but it’s most certainly not a waste of the money you paid to fill your tank.   


Never skip a service

There’s a reason why your vehicle has a service book with mileage-milestones for which you need to send your car in and have it checked out. It’s both for your safety and the health of your car. Also, it will make sure your car is operating at its best and not relying on burning extra fuel to compensate for clogged filters, old engine oil and faulty spark plugs.

For this reason, you should never skip a vehicle service. If your engine doesn’t have what it needs to function the way it was designed to, it will start to take a toll on your vehicle’s consumption and require you to find more money in a month to keep your car rolling.


Open your windows

Air conditioning in your car is a luxury with a price. Most cars’ air conditioning systems use fuel to operate and over time can be the reason why you couldn’t make it all way back home that one evening after work.

Only use your AC when it’s absolutely necessary and don’t blast it on a high-fan speed either. When you can, rather open your windows or use your car’s fan to regulate temperature – a fuel-free solution.

Follow these five fuel-saving tactics and enjoy the extra kilometres. Your car and your bank account will appreciate it.

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