As the population increases, so too do the number of cars on our road. With latest figures showing that there are over 40 million cars on UK roads, that’s a lot of damage that’s being done to our environment – every single day. But there are ways you can play your part in reducing emissions. We’ve got some top tips to help you become an eco-friendly driver.
Choose a green car
The greenest way to get around would be by NOT driving. If that’s not an option and nor is taking public transport, the next best thing to buy an energy-efficient car. A sought-after hybrid model will boost your eco credentials. Just be sure to consider your finances properly before browsing what’s available.
And now could be a great time to invest. Over the next few years, diesel and petrol engines will be phased out in favour of greener vehicles – meaning demand and price will rise.
Watch fuel economy
The higher the miles per gallon (mpg) the better the fuel economy. Fuel economy is important because, not only will improving it save you money, but it will also be better for the environment. There are various factors that impact on fuel economy, from engine size to weight. So the best way to discover a car’s true miles per gallon is to read plenty of reviews and owner feedback when researching.
If you’re not in the market for a new car, you can improve your mpg by not overloading your car and driving at a steady and constant speed.
Check tyre pressure
If your tyres are under-inflated, your car’s engine will have to work harder to get them to turn properly – which means you’ll use more fuel. The optimum pressure will vary between models, but the suggested amounts are usually printed on the inside of the driver’s door.
You should check the pressure regularly with a tyre pressure gauge. And if you’re going on a long journey – like a self-drive holiday, then you should check the pressure before and during your journey, as well as before setting off for home.
Plan your journey
Try and avoid peak times for travelling. When travelling on busy roads, you’re more likely to be stuck in traffic – leaving your engine idling and burning fuel. It’s estimated that an idling car produces enough exhaust emissions every minute to fill up to 150 balloons.
You should also check the different routes and take the one that is quicker – even if it’s longer. And if a route is less popular, there’s a chance it will take less time too.
Keeping a constant, steady speed will help minimise the amount of fuel you burn on your journey. If your car has a speed limiter, use it in built-up areas, and if your car has cruise control, these can be used effectively on long stretches of motorway.