Before you even took your first driving lesson, you probably heard the road safety messages relating to speed time and time again. It is a well-known fact that slower speeds are safer speeds, as not only do you have more time to react to hazards up ahead, if you do find yourself involved in a collision, the severity of the impact is lower. Did you also know that keeping your speed down can be a cheaper way of driving too?
Keep to a sensible speed in moving traffic
As a rule of thumb, the higher the acceleration of your car, the higher your fuel consumption. Therefore, your car is at its most efficient when you have just changed gear. Keep an eye on your speedometer, and don’t let your speed start to creep up while in your lower gears, as you will see your fuel economy take a significant hit.
Anticipate the road ahead
Driving slowly and economically isn’t all about staying within the speed limit and maintaining a constant speed, it is also about slowing down ahead of time when you can see a queue or hazard up ahead. The more time you spend pressing down on your accelerator, the more fuel you are going to use. If you see a queue of traffic or a red light up ahead, rather than accelerate up to it and apply the brakes at the last minute, ease off the accelerator and let your speed gradually fall as you approach.
Don’t be too keen to make a quick getaway
This applies to all roads, but you should pay extra attention when you have come off a fast road such as a motorway, onto a road with a lower speed limit, such as a residential area. It can be tempting to accelerate away from a roundabout or set of traffic lights but this will see you burning through your fuel.
Not only does driving at a more economical speed reduce your fuel consumption, by sticking to the speed limit, you won’t find yourself having to fork out for an unexpected speeding fine or taking a day off work to attend a speed awareness course. Look out for Project Pictogram images on other vehicles as a helpful reminder to slow down while driving.