Ways To Boost MPG & Save Money
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Hybrid cars are obviously pretty economical as is because it is possible to run them off an electric matter at least some of the time, but that does not mean that you cannot make further savings. One of the best ways to do that is by maximizing your fuel economy.
Below, you will find some of the best ways to improve the fuel economy of your hybrid right now so you can save even more money with an already economical vehicle. These tricks will work equally well with plug-in hybrids and traditional hybrids.
Keep an Eye on the Energy Monitor
Keeping a close eye on your hybrid’s energy monitor will enable you to see when you are using fuel and when it might be possible for you to turn on electricity or charge the battery. It’s a really simple way of ensuring that you are always driving in an optimum way for your fuel economy and the planet.
Keep It Light
When you’re driving a hybrid, it really does pay to keep a light touch on the throttle. Why? Because doing so will ensure that the car stays in EV mode for as long as possible, which means you will not be burning any fuel at all and can thus save a lot of money.
Stick To 70
If fuel economy is also a big concern for you, then staying as close to 70 miles per hour as you can on the highway (or even less, assuming the speed limit allows that speed and you’re not impeding traffic) will help to keep your car from burning lots of fuel unnecessarily. This is not only a good thing for you and your pocketbook, but it will also help to lower pollution levels on the highway, which is a really big problem in a lot of places.
Get Into a Driving Rhythm
When driving in built-up areas like cities and busy towns, it is a good idea to get into a driving rhythm whereby you accelerate to gain speed, then quickly ease of the throttle before once again easing on to accelerate once more. This will help you to engage your car’s battery instead of just using fuel. You will see a significant saving on your car’s gas bills if you do so. It can take a while to get into a good rhythm but once you’ve been driving your hybrid for a while, it will become second nature to you.
Ensure You’re Familiar with Your Driving Modes
The vast majority of hybrid vehicles have more than one–usually up to three–distinct driving modes–typically Eco, EV, and Power. If you get to know these modes, then you can be sure that you always make the right decisions to use your battery more and your fuel less and your fuel less.
Eco mode works by reducing air conditioning output and preventing you from accelerating too hard, while EV mode enables the car to be powered by battery alone when traveling at designated speeds, and Power mode engages the battery to boost acceleration alongside the engine, which helps you to maneuver quickly at busy junctions and similar situations.
Choose the right one, and you will seldom use more energy than you need to when out on the roads.
Braking as early as possible and as gently as possible improves the regenerative capabilities of your hybrid’s brakes. That makes it easier for your car to operate in EV mode for greater periods of time, which means you will be burning no fuel for long stretches and you can keep your tank topped up for longer.
Keep Out of Neutral
Which gear you are in can have a huge effect on how much fuel you burn, but one thing you can do to lower your fuel consumption significantly is to stop putting your car into neutral or ‘N’ when stationary in a stop-start traffic situation. Doing so will prevent your hybrid from generating electricity, causing your battery to discharge. If you put it in ‘B’ (where that gear is available) when you are descending steep inclines or coming up to roundabouts, and use D when ascending or on a flat route, you will find that you are still able to generate maximum energy efficiency.
Consider Using Cruise Control
Using cruise control is a good way to minimize the number of revs your engine makes while maintaining a constant speed, which means that you will not burn nearly a much fuel.
Consider Coasting, Too
If it is safe to do so, you may also want to try coasting with your foot off the accelerator when you are driving downhill. You won’t be adding electric energy to the battery, but you won’t be using either the battery or gas engine. If you try this, ensure that you have your foot in position over the brakes ready for when you may need to slow down or stop.
Obviously, you should always maintain a high level of awareness when driving. If you pay very close attention to what is in front of you when driving, you will be able to avoid braking or at least braking harshly much more often, which means you will not need to use as much fuel.
Upgrade Your Engine
Depending on the hybrid vehicle you drive, it may be possible to upgrade certain aspects of the engine to make it more fuel-efficient. For example, these days you can buy camshafts that improve fuel economy by as much as 20 percent, and changing out old worn spark plugs will help your car’s ignition system to work more efficiently, thus is it possible to make savings there. If you aren’t sure what is possible for your engine, speak to your mechanic, and they should be able to help.
It’s also fair to say that having your engine serviced regularly will help it to run more efficiently so be sure to do that too.
As you can see, there are a number of simple things you can do to improve the fuel economy of your hybrid vehicles and save money, as well as helping to save the planet even more than you already are. So, what are you waiting for?