Recent fuel hikes have had motorists around the country near-distraught over how much it will now cost to fill your tank. While fuel has certainly never really been ‘cheap’ in Australia, the steep increase in the price per liter is enough to make even the staunchest diesel fan pause – but the good news is that there are various ways of maintaining and controlling your fuel mileage!
Changing your driving behaviour may not make trips to the service station any easier (least of all on your bank account), but with our driving, maintenance, and fuel economy tips, you could save yourself a considerable amount of money on fuel each month.
Maximise your mileage with our diesel fuel economy tips below.
Speed Limits, More a Help than a Hindrance!
One of the most common pieces of advice given to motorists is to stick to the speed limit – and this is just as relevant for those driving a diesel car. While it’s easy to think that going a little over the speed limit won’t make much of a difference, when it comes to fuel economy it really can!
When driving at high speeds, your engine has to work much harder than it does at lower speeds, using up more fuel in the process. So by keeping your speed within the local legal limits, you’ll be using less fuel and saving money on diesel at the service station each month.
Stop Stopping and Starting
Another common piece of advice for better fuel economy is to avoid stopping and starting as much as possible. When you come to a stop, your engine has to work hard to get back up to speed, using more fuel in the process than if you maintain a consistent speed.
If you can, try and plan your trips so that you don’t have to make too many stops along the way – this will save on both time and money.
Maintain Your Diesel’s Service Intervals
One of the easiest ways to ensure maximum fuel economy is to maintain your diesel car’s service intervals as recommended by the manufacturer. This includes both regular maintenance and checking/replacing air filters as needed.
If you don’t have the time or knowledge to do this yourself, take your car in for a service at least once every six months – this will help keep your engine running smoothly and with as little friction as possible, improving fuel economy in the process.
Check Your Tires
Incorrectly inflated tires can have a significant impact on a car’s fuel economy, so it’s important to check these regularly and ensure they’re properly inflated. You can find the correct inflation levels for your tires in the owner’s manual, or on the side of the tire itself.
If your tires are underinflated, this will lead to increased friction and a decrease in fuel efficiency. Conversely, overinflated tires can lead to uneven wear on the tread and an increase in fuel consumption.
Have Your ECU Custom-Tuned
If you’re serious about maximising your diesel’s fuel economy, then you may want to consider having its ECU custom-tuned. This is a process that can be done by a tuning specialist at Just Autos, and it involves adjusting various settings on the car’s engine control unit (ECU) in order to improve fuel efficiency.
While not all diesel cars can benefit from ECU tuning, those that can often see significant improvements in fuel economy – by up to 10-15%. How much your fuel economy improves by, if at all, is dependent on several factors, such as the age of your vehicle and the state of its internal mechanical components. Drivers with a heavy foot may also not enjoy the full benefit of ECU tuning for fuel economy, especially if they drive in stop-start-stop conditions!
ECU remapping is a safe and worthwhile exercise under the right circumstances. To find out if your diesel would benefit from ECU tuning for fuel economy, chat with one of the team at Just Autos.
Maximise Your Diesel’s Performance
While following these tips won’t completely offset the effect of recent fuel hikes, they can help you to minimise the impact and keep your fuel costs under control. So if you’re looking to get the most out of your diesel car, be sure to follow these tips and enjoy improved fuel economy – and savings – in the process.
For more insight into how you can improve the fuel economy or performance on your diesel, contact Just Autos, the local diesel specialists. Our team can help troubleshoot any performance issues you are experiencing with your diesel and provide sound advice on how best to resolve the problem.