Petrol prices are going up and down every week, sometimes making your weekly fill-up more painful to the wallet than usual. You’ll want to make the most out of every litre and sen — without squeezing every drop out of the petrol pump hose.
Here are 5 reasons your car might be guzzling more petrol than usual:
The spark plugs in your engine function to provide the spark that makes combustion in the engine possible. This isn’t a one-off action during engine startup — spark plugs transmit an electrical signal sent from the ignition coil at a predetermined time to ignite the air-fuel mixture inside the combustion chamber.
Basically, if your spark plugs are working correctly, your engine will burn fuel efficiently, and you’ll get better than average fuel economy. Conversely, if your spark plugs have gone bad, combustion won’t go so well, which will affect engine performance and fuel economy.
Symptoms of bad spark plugs include:
Any of these symptoms have the potential to cause serious damage to your engine, and more importantly, your wallet. So get them checked out by a professional as soon as possible.
You might have already heard that keeping your tyres properly inflated can help improve fuel economy. Every five pounds per square inch (psi) of tire pressure you lose can translate into a two per cent loss of gas mileage. Under-inflated tyres drag more on the road, making your engine burn more fuel to overcome this resistance to move your vehicle.
Some people go the extra mile to over-inflate their tyres. While an experiment by Popular Mechanics did conclude that over inflating tyres gets you a tiny bit of better mileage, they also concluded that the cost of having to replace your tyres earlier makes over-inflation not worth it.
By over-inflating your tyres, you risk:
Always follow the recommended tyre pressure according to the guide provided by your car manufacturer, which you can find on a label on the driver’s seat door frame.
Tyre pressure should be checked at least once a month, more often if you regularly drive on rough roads or into potholes (we recommend avoiding this if possible).
The air filter in your car functions, as the name implies, to filter dirt and debris from the air that goes into your engine. This is not to be confused with the cabin air filter, which is responsible for keeping exhaust fumes and other dirt from entering your air-conditioning system and stinking up your car interior.
For each liter of fuel the engine burns, it requires up to 10,000 liters of clean air; this makes the quality and condition of your air filter vital to maintaining good engine performance and fuel mileage.
When your air filter is dirty, the miniscule fibres are clogged by soot and other dirt that reduces air’s ability to pass through. This means your engine gets less air as you drive, reducing its efficiency. If your air filter gets really dirty, it not only costs you fuel — the lack of air flow can also result in fouled spark plugs and potential starting problems.
A clean air filter will improve gas mileage by as much as 14% and may increase acceleration by up to 11% depending on the make and model of your car.
Your car air filter can be cleaned, but it is recommended to replace it every 20,000km or 1 year, whichever comes first.
Did you know your driving habits determine a lot about the condition of your vehicle? And i’m not just referring to the number of dents in your car — aggressive driving habits not only cause tyres and various other parts to wear out faster; it also ruins your fuel economy.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, aggressive driving such as speeding, rapid acceleration and braking, “can lower your gas mileage by roughly 15% to 30% at highway speeds and 10% to 40% in stop-and-go traffic”.
“Jackrabbit” starts and hard braking is shown to only reduce travel time by 4 percent, while increasing toxic vehicle emissions up to five times the usual amount.
In conclusion, you should practice sensible and safe driving — you might avoid an accident and save more than just gas money.
Engine oils function to lubricate the engine, which reduces wear and prevents corrosion and overheating. But did you know using the right engine oil can help you save petrol?
Low grade engine oil won’t lubricate your engine properly — which is especially the case if vehicles are incorrectly using high-viscosity oils. The reason high-viscosity (thicker) oils eat up more petrol is simple: it’s harder to move.
Engine oil functioning properly relies on it being able to circulate within the engine block. If your oil is too thick, your oil pump will have to work harder, which consumes energy. Besides this, thick oil can’t circulate and lubricate efficiently, which can cause unnecessary, energy-consuming friction between parts.
This doesn’t mean thin oil is the answer either, as too thin oil similarly won’t lubricate properly.
Basically, if metal parts grind together, they not only produce heat and are damaged — your engine also has to work harder to overcome the resistance. This is easily avoidable by using high quality oil at the appropriate viscosity for your vehicle type.
Switch to a high quality engine oil at the right viscosity to get better fuel economy and more savings. It’s also a worthwhile investment, as it will provide better protection to your engine, and improve overall performance.
You can see the effects of high quality engine oil yourself by booking a mobile engine oil change via Maxx ‘N Go that gives you maximum convenience at amazing value. Need more convincing? You can listen to our customer testimonials here.
The Maxx ‘N Go Service Center is also open to take care of all your major service needs — replacing air filters, spark plugs and more.