Cut The Cost Of Driving
Fuel prices and mileage
- Cut your petrol costs. Petrol and diesel prices have risen by a staggering amount and are expected to continue rising as oil production declines. Before heading to your usual petrol stop take a look at the PetrolPrices website. Just kind in your postcode and the site will tell you where you can find the cheapest petrol in your local area.
- Thinking of getting a new car? Make sure you compare the fuel efficiency and road tax costs of car models by using the comparison tool on the ‘Act On CO2’ website. It will also tell you the top 10 most fuel efficient vehicles in each car category – in the family category it just so happens to be the Volkswagen Passat Saloon 1.6 TDI 105PS, just in case you were wondering…
- Diesel vs Petrol.If you’re not sure whether to go for a diesel engine or a petrol one, take a look at the comparison tool over on consumer website Which? – it’ll work out how much both will cost you in the long-run.
Save money on servicing
1. Learn how to check the basics of your car yourself – you’ll then nip any problems in the bud before they have the chance to cause any serious damage to your means. Dust off your Owner’s Manual and truly give it a read – it’ll explain exactly how to check your engine oil, engine coolant and automatic transmission. Knowing this stuff is guaranteed to save you money in the long run.
2. Pay attention to those lights on the dashboard which alert you to problems. I ignored one blinking red light once and my engine burned out! The quicker you get problems sorted the less damage is likely to have been done.
3. Get you car serviced by a garage that you know and trust. And ask lots of questions-a good mechanic won’t mind that you want to learn. at any rate you do don’t stick with a garage just because a friend of the family works there. Unless they’re genuinely good, put loyalty aside and move on.
1. What determines an expensive insurance policy? Factors such as car and engine size, car modifications, annual mileage, numbers of drivers per car, no-claims bonus and the kind of insurance that you go for (fully comprehensive insurance is more expensive than third party, fire & theft only).
2. Make sure you’re getting the best deal on car insurance costs by using a comparison tool. Insurance companies bank on the fact that most of us are too lazy to check in other places for our car insurance. They just send us the quote for another year’s premiums and hope we will pay without question. Don’t be fooled, compare today.
3. Before you buy the cheapest policy you find, go back to your current insurer and ask if they can beat it. You’ve nothing to lose!
4. Cut insurance costs by opting for a higher annual excess.
5. Pay in one lump yearly instead of spreading it out in monthly instalments if you can provide it. You will receive a discount.
6. Don’t make small claims if you can avoid it. Keep your no-claims years going for as long as possible and further down the line you’ll reap the rewards.
7. Generally insurance companies give lower quotes for more environmentally friendly vehicles.
Adopt a greener driving style
Going green doesn’t have to average forking out more money- in fact when it comes to driving it could truly save you a small fortune. Follow the green driving tips below and knock 10% of your fuel consumption. Less consumption equals less money being spent on it.
Before your journey:
- Clear all unnecessary junk from your boot as more weight equals more fuel.
- Make sure your tyres are at the correct pressure as underinflated tyres eat up a lot of fuel. Check your car manual for advice and top up the tyre’s air at a local garage.
- Don’t get lost! Take the shortest route to your destination as possible, and if you can invest in a SatNav. This clever little device might not come cheap but it has the ability to save you from a million wrong turns and an awful lot of petrol.
During your journey:
- Accelerate and decelerate smoothly and cut right down on gear changes.
- Where possible stick to 35mph as according to the AA this is the rough optimum speed for keeping fuel consumption low.
- Keep your speed down. According to the Department of Transport, driving at 70mph uses up to 9% more fuel than at 60mph and up to 15% more than at 50mph. Cruising at 80mph can use up to 25% more fuel than at 70mph.