Pump up to cut down
Under-inflated tyres create more resistance when your car is moving, which means your engine has to work harder, so more fuel is used and more CO2 emissions are produced. Simply check and adjust your tyre pressures regularly and also before long journeys. This will also help to increase the life of your tyres.
Less clutter in your car means less CO2
Clutter in your boot is extra weight your engine has to lug around. By removing it, you could reduce your engineís workload. This will burn less fuel and cut your CO2 emissions, so unload any items you wonít need for your journey before you set out.
Less stopping and starting means less CO2
Every time you stop then start again in a traffic queue, the engine uses more fuel and therefore produces more CO2. Keep an eye on the traffic ahead and slow down early by gently lifting your foot off the accelerator while keeping the car in gear. In this way, the traffic may have started moving again by the time you approach the vehicle in front, so you can then change gear and be on your way.
Over revving accelerates emissions
Modern car engines are designed to be efficient from the moment they are switched on, so revving up like a Formula 1 car in pole position only wastes fuel and increases engine wear. Using your gears wisely by changing up a gear a little earlier can also reduce revs. If you drive a diesel car try changing up a gear when the rev counter reaches 2000rpm. For a petrol car try changing up at 2500rpm.
Idling is wasting fuel
When the engine is idling youíre wasting fuel and adding to CO2 emissions. If youíre likely to be at a standstill for more than 3 minutes, simply switch off the engine.
There is no easy technical way to deal with CO2. The best way to reduce it and the other emissions is to use the car only when it is necessary and to walk or use public transport where possible. When you are choosing a vehicle and you have selected the most appropriate class of vehicle for your needs, choose the most fuel-efficient vehicle in that group using the Best On CO2 rankings developed in association with What Car?. The fuel consumption of similar size cars can vary as much as 45% and by choosing the most fuel efficient car in their class, rather than the average emissions, can be reduced by up to 24%.
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FURTHER HINTS FOR LESS ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT
Try to avoid using your car for short journeys - use public transport, ride a bicycle or walk.
Plan ahead - choose uncongested routes, combine trips, car share.
Cold starts - drive off as soon as possible after starting.
Drive smoothly and efficiently - harsh acceleration and heavy braking have a very significant effect on fuel consumption. Driving more smoothly saves fuel.
Slow down - driving at high speeds significantly increases fuel consumption.
Use higher gears as soon as traffic conditions allow.
Switch off - sitting stationary is zero miles per gallon. Switch off the engine whenever it is safe to do so.
Lose weight - donít carry unnecessary weight. Remove roof racks when not in use.
Regular servicing helps keep the engine at best efficiency.
Keep the pressure up - make sure the tyres are inflated to the correct pressure for the vehicle.
Do not compromise safety, but be aware that the use of onboard electrical devices increases fuel consumption.
Check your fuel consumption - it will help you get the most from the car. Changes in overall fuel consumption may indicate a fault.
Use air-conditioning sparingly - running air-conditioning continuously will increase fuel consumption significantly.