Posted by: safedriver | September 6, 2009

Does this make cents?

canadian_moneyI’m in the process of teaching my kids how to save their money. I want them to have spending money, but I also want them to understand how to save for bigger items. Saving money can be difficult for many people. One of the best lessons in business is if you want to increase your profits, you need to cut your expenses. What expenses do you have as a driver? Can you do a better job in cutting your expenses? Let’s find out.

The biggest bang for your buck is the amount we spend on fuel each year. The average driver spends over $2000 per year on fuel. What if you could save 20% of your fuel bill each year? Would you be interested in this? I thought you would, so let’s analyze this. Part of saving fuel is ensuring your vehicle is properly tuned. A well tuned vehicle saves fuel over the long run. You’ll get back what you paid in that tune up. Having properly inflated tires makes a difference too. A softer tire is more difficult to move than a solid tire. Checking the air pressure each month is ideal, but weekly during winter weather since the pressure drops quicker in cold weather.

Every time you make your engine work harder, it uses more fuel. Some suggestions to help you save would include the reduction of unnecessary weight in your vehicle; such as the hockey and baseball equipment or the camping gear. A lighter vehicle means less energy to get it moving. If you can also avoid stopping, it can save you fuel. The engine works harder getting a vehicle moving from a stopped position and less energy if it was still in motion.

Planning your route is a big part of saving fuel. Combine your trips so you use less kilometers for your trips. I try to stop at the store on my way home from work, so I can reduce the times I have to go out. Route planning can also help if you choose routes that allow you to move at a reasonable rate, without waiting in traffic. This includes thinking about the time of day we have to drive.

Smooth acceleration makes a world of difference when we’re trying to save fuel. A harsh jab on the gas wastes fuel. Also, driving in a lane that flows better will usually mean you won’t have to stop behind buses and behind drivers waiting to make turns. And don’t forget about car pooling. Sharing the ride with 1 or 2 people will mean less time you’re actually driving. You can reduce your fuel bill by almost another 25% by sharing the drive.

Since the current fuel prices always seem to be growing between 15 to 20 cents a year, we need to do something to save a few bucks. Driving safely and economically will not only save fuel, it can make a lot of sense… and cents!

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