Fuel-saving hacks: Motorists told to change habits to boost fuel efficiency

Fuel: Matt Allwright shares tips on making your car more efficient

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Motorists across the UK have been dealing with steadily rising fuel prices since the start of the year, with experts estimating where prices could reach. Data from the RAC makes for grim reading for drivers, with average petrol prices hitting 191.25p per litre and diesel less than a penny away from being £2 a litre.

Compared to this time last year, drivers are seeing increases of more than 60p for petrol and 65p for diesel.

With an average 55-litre family car, drivers are looking at a staggering increase of £33 in just 12 months.

Prices have increased more than 90p since the start of July 2020.

New data from Ipsos seen by Express.co.uk found that 71 percent of Britons have taken steps to reduce their fuel spend in the past six months.

Three-quarters have used their car less to save on fuel, with 15 percent looking to change their vehicle before the end of the year, despite the Government scrapping electric vehicle grants.

Four in 10 motorists have also admitted to changing their driving style, most notably accelerating less to save on fuel.

Hypermiling has become one of the most popular fuel-saving techniques, with drivers utilising small changes in their habits to save fuel.

By anticipating the road ahead, drivers can brake and accelerate less, helping them boost their fuel efficiency.

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They both burn fuel, so experts are urging road users to drive smoothly to avoid over-revving and causing strain on the engine.

Motorists should accelerate gently and read the traffic situation ahead to avoid unnecessary braking.

Roll up slowly for traffic lights or queues to avoid having to stop completely and coast to a stop rather than slamming on the brakes.

Aggressive accelerating and braking can use up to 60 percent more fuel, which quickly makes every journey much more costly.

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The Ipsos study also found that 35 percent of people claimed they had not used air conditioning in the past six months.

The same amount said they would continue to do so even over the rest of the year when temperatures are set to rise further.

A smaller, yet meaningful, change that drivers can make is to not start the engine until they are ready to set off.

It can be seen as a waste of fuel as the engine warms up quicker when the car is actually moving.

Idling can use up to two litres of fuel per hour, emitting over 5.26kg of CO2. 

This costs around £3.20 an hour, on average, for petrol cars and a little bit more – £3.40 – for diesel.

Motorists with newer cars are advised to make sure the “stop start” system is on to conserve fuel when stationary.

CarShop’s Ben Scholes said: “It’s more important than ever to consider how we drive and maintain our motors too. 

“Just a few changes to how we drive – and how we look after our cars – can save us a pretty penny on fuel costs over time. 

“And, let’s face it, this has never been more important.”

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