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With petrol increasing by 37 cents per litre, motorists will have to make the most of every tank of fuel.

Ricardo Coetzee, Head of Auto & General Insurance explains that a car can burn between 30 to 40% more fuel if proper maintenance is not performed regularly so, if you want to save on fuel, and keep your vehicle running for longer, investing in good maintenance and changing your driving habits are essential.

Auto & General shares the top 10 tips for better fuel economy:

  1. Make sure that your vehicle is serviced regularly. Things like worn spark plugs, sticky brakes, low coolant levels, dirty oil, and dirty fuel and air filters all add up to engine inefficiency, which leads to increased fuel consumption.
  2. Check your vehicle’s wheel alignment. Bad wheel alignment causes more friction, which takes more power to overcome and results in higher fuel consumption. Check for underinflated tyres, as these, too, increase resistance.
  3. Close the vehicle’s windows when driving, as open windows cause drag.
  4. Reduce the vehicle’s weight by removing unnecessary items from it and, if you mostly do city driving, consider driving with only half a tank of fuel.
  5. Don’t speed – at 110km/h your car uses up to 25% more fuel than it would cruising at a more moderate 90km/h.
  6. Avoid stop-starting. Maintain momentum as far as possible by looking and planning ahead, flowing with traffic and timing your approaches to hills, traffic lights and crossings better.
  7. Use the air conditioning only when necessary.
  8. Many vehicles have economy settings to optimise performance, throttle response, ride height etc. for maximum fuel efficiency. Use them to your advantage.
  9. As a rule of thumb: the higher the gear, the lower the petrol consumption, so always drive in the highest gear possible, without straining the engine by letting the revs drop too low.
  10. Keep your finger on the pulse by reading or listening to up to date traffic reports and monitoring your GPS for faster routes.

By following these simple tips, you can make every tank of fuel go further, save money, and reduce your carbon footprint. Remember, proper maintenance and driving habits are key to beating the fuel price hike. At Auto & General, we are committed to helping our customers save on fuel and keep their vehicles running efficiently. DM

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