Important Automotive Related Green Tips

By | October 7, 2011

If you are concerned by our impact on the natural world, there are certain changes you can make to your lifestyle that will lessen your footprint. One of the biggest problems in terms of the amount of pollution that enters the Earth’s atmosphere is the number of cars on the road. Not only is air pollution from a vehicle bad for our own health, and if you live in a big city you will know all about smog and its impact on the respiratory system, greenhouse gases of the kind emitted from motor vehicles are also believed to play a role in climate change and global warming. To help minimize the damage you cause, take a moment to check out the following automotive related green tips.

Perhaps the easiest way to reduce the amount of carbon you produce each time you drive is to choose a vehicle that has excellent fuel efficiency. As most consumers are now aware of the impact that their motor vehicles have on the planet, there is a greater demand for cars that have good gas mileage, moreover, with the cost of fuel rising on an annual basis, owning an efficient vehicle can help to reduce personal outlay by a considerable amount. If you are checking out new vehicles with the aim of making a purchase, it can be worth looking in to the option of buying a hybrid. Hybrid cars are now a common site, and are a great way to be a green driver.
The more weight you have in your vehicle, the greater amount of gas that it will use. If you empty your trunk and only carry what is actually necessary, you will burn less fuel and save money. If you have cargo carrier on the roof, take this off until you need it. Also, if the trunk has become a storage unit, do yourself a favor and put the items in your garage. All that you need in your vehicle is a spare tire and a few basic tools.
Many drivers are unaware that by keeping the tires inflated to the right level will reduce road resistance, and therefore offer a better fuel economy. If you are not sure as to what pressure your vehicle’s tires should be, check in the owner’s manual or take your car to a local mechanic.
The manner in which you drive will also have an impact on how much fuel you burn. If you have a tendency to speed up and slow down erratically, you will be using more gas than if you gradually accelerated and decelerated. To get the best fuel economy you should cruise at a respectable speed, the more you use your foot pedals, the less efficient your journey will be. A useful tip is to increase speed before approaching a hill, rather than putting your foot down when on the actual incline.
If you spend a lot of time driving in a city, you may end up stationary for prolonged periods. When stuck in a jam or at traffic lights, turn your engine off. If you were to keep the motor idling for long periods, you will be adding to pollution levels unnecessarily.
The next piece of advice may seem obvious, but nevertheless it is worth stating. Try and drive less! Consider whether you can walk to your local grocery store instead of driving, not only would this be a much greener way of buying your daily commodities, it is also a simple method to get some exercise. Think about car pooling to your place of work, if we all car pooled on a regular basis, the amount of traffic on the road would be reduced considerably.
Try to plan your trips so that you spend less time behind the wheel. Choosing the shortest route will reduce mileage, and therefore cut down on the amount of gas you use. Also, combining certain tasks in one trip is also a good idea, for example, you could head to your local store on the way home from work as opposed to going out again later.
If living in a region of the country that is prone to icy and snowy weather, your vehicle may be less efficient than the same model driven in a warmer area. The buildup of snow and ice on the hood, trunk, and other areas does cause friction and drag, which in turn has a knock on effect on performance and efficiency. If you wake up and find your car covered in a white dusting, try to scrape off as much as possible before hitting the road.