5 Ways To Be An Eco Friendly Driver

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Driving gives us the freedom to get where we want to go, when we want to go there. 

Most times we jump into our cars to get somewhere and don’t think much of it. It’s a means to an end. If each of us put a little thought into our driving we could become eco-friendly drivers, making the world a bit cleaner and greener for us all.

Here are a few driving habits to incorporate into your driving routine:

No idling

Idling is when a driver leaves the engine of their car running while the vehicle is not moving. Idling creates pollution, contributes to global warming and wastes your fuel and money.  If you are going to be stopped for longer than 10 seconds turn off your engine. Exception to this-don’t turn the car off when you are in traffic!  The amount of gas used to turn off and re-start a vehicle engine is equal to that of idling for only 10 seconds, any more is wasting gas and contributes to unnecessary emissions and vehicle wear-and-tear.

Keep your car maintained

Follow the routine maintenance schedule for your car. Keeping your car maintained will help reduce the amount of fuel your car will need to run properly. Get those tires checked: keeping your tires inflated to the recommended pressure can reduce your fuel consumption by 3 to 4 per cent.

Carpool

Share a ride and it’s a win-win for you and the environment.  Carpooling will reduce your travel costs, decrease the number of cars on the road and improve parking issues. Most importantly it reduces the amount of pollution emitted from vehicles-less cars on the road equals less pollution.

Don’t put your pedal to the metal

As tempting as it may be-don’t speed! Gas mileage declines rapidly above 60 mph.  For every 5 mph increase above 60 you are paying almost 10 cents more per gallon of gasoline.

Empty your car

Do you have extra junk hanging around in your car or trunk? Those extra pounds could be reducing your cars fuel economy.  If you have a roof rack, remove it when it’s not in use. The car is much less aerodynamic with the rack on, which forces the car to burn extra fuel.

Make these small, simple changes to your driving routine and you will find a few extra pennies in your pocket. The environment will also thank you for making a difference.

[Photo used under Creative Commons from Scott Schram/Flickr]