How do I improve my fuel consumption?

5 July 2016

It seems as though, as soon as we get excited about a small dip in the fuel price, a couple of big increases sneak up on us and spoil the short-lived celebration.


You sit at the petrol station and stare at the pump. You watch the rands go up and up - far quicker than the litres - and nervously begin checking your bank balance online. You ask, “What can I do to get more from my tank?”

Well unfortunately, we can’t control the fuel price. We can give you some MotorHappy tips on how to keep your car running for longer on one tank though.

Drive at the speed limit

Not only is this the legal approach, driving at the speed limit can save you money in costly fines -as well as fuel.All cars lose fuel economy at speeds above 90 km/h, so driving at 80km/h instead of 100 km/h will reduce your fuel costs drastically.

Also, try avoid aggressive driving and aggressive starts. There really isn’t much point in pulling off from a stop street quickly when there is another one only 10 metres away anyway.

Switch off your air conditioner

If it’s not completely necessary (you can handle a little warmth), avoid using your air conditioner. Driving with the air-con on increases your fuel cost from 13% up to 21% - wow!

Remove unnecessary weight

Okay, so you can’t tell the rest of your family to get out of the car and walk home, but it may be a good idea to take that heavy package out of your boot - you know that one you have been transporting around for three weeks for no good reason. Minimising the load of your car can go a long way in reducing your fuel consumption.

Don’t idle

Modern cars are designed to warm up quickly, so avoid idling when you can. Think about it, idling gets you zero kilometres to the litre.

Prioritise maintenance

Regular maintenance, as recommended in your owner's manual, will help your car achieve its most efficient fuel economy.

Some overlooked maintenance items (like a dirty air filter) can increase your fuel cost up to 13%. The majority of maintenance plans* include such items, so investing in a comprehensive plan can help you save on fuel – and excessively bitten nails – in the long run.

If you have an unanswered motoring-related question that you think is vital to your motor-happiness, share it with us in the comments section.

* All warranties (original or extended), service plans, maintenance plans, and roadside assistance packages differ in terms of features, benefits and, terms and conditions. This blog is for illustration purposes only.


This article is intended to be used and must be used for informational purposes only. We do not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability and accuracy of this information. Any action you take upon the information in this article is strictly at your own risk. We will not be liable for any losses and/or damages in connection with the use of the information contained in this article.

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