A few years ago when petrol prices started rising rapidly, petrol station owners had to buy new pumps to reflect the double digit prices. Car owners started trading in their large cars for smaller, more fuel efficient cars.
Soon after the drastic jumps stabilised a bit and as time moved on, some drivers have become less conscious of their fuel expenditure.
Yet, since the rand’s recent fluctuations against the dollar, South Africans have seen an increase of more than 150c between March and June.
The rest of the year does not appear to bode well either. Petrol hikes so far have been protected from even bigger increases because of lower oil prices, offsetting the effect of the weak rand. Now, however, oil prices are strengthening. Before you trade up again, you may want to think twice.
According to the MD of MasterDrive, Eugene Herbert, now might be a good time to pay a little more attention to eco-driving again.
“On average you will see a reduction of up to 10% in petrol consumption. Wear and tear on your fleet or your employees’ own cars will also decrease drastically,” he says.
Herbert provides some tips on how to start driving economically:
· Plan your route to avoid wasting petrol on longer routes or when you get lost.
· If conditions permit, drive with your windows closed – even with your aircon on, you can use less fuel.
· Do not speed. The faster you drive the more fuel you use. Rather keep a steady cruising speed.
· Avoid harsh acceleration.
· Avoid bringing your vehicle to a complete stop: anticipate light changes to minimize stopping.
· Vehicle maintenance also helps save on fuel: Do not skip services and when you service next time, use multi-grade oil as it reduces drag.
· Underinflated tyres use more petrol.
· Drive courteously: among other negative consequences, road rage will cause you to use more petrol
If you are interested in reducing your petrol consumption as much as possible, give MasterDrive a call on 081 448 3709. Their eco-driving courses will give you the skills to achieve this.