A car is not only one of the biggest expenses for the average household, but also one of its biggest sources of pollution. If you want to reduce your impact on the planet and save some money at the same time, one of the best things you can do is make your car more efficient.
To help you do exactly that, here are three simple maintenance tips that will improve the efficiency of your vehicle today. Implement these and your carbon footprint is sure to shrink.
Check your tyre pressure
As the part of your vehicle that makes contact with the road, the condition of your tyres has a huge effect on your car’s performance. If they aren’t inflated to the right pressure they’ll not only wear faster and provide you with less grip, but they’ll also dramatically reduce your fuel efficiency.
You should check the pressure of your tyres every few weeks to ensure your car is running as efficiently as possible. Simply find your vehicle’s recommended tyre pressure using Tyre Safe’s car pressure checker and set your tyres accordingly using your own tyre pump or one at a petrol station.
Clean your exhaust
Even the most conscientious of car owners often neglect to clean the inside of their exhaust. However, this is a big mistake if you want an efficient vehicle. All the carbon dioxide and monoxide produced by your car’s engine passes through its exhaust, and some of the carbon in these gasses fuses to it on the way out. If this is left to build up, it can have an impact on the performance and efficiency of your car.
You can remove the bulk of carbon build-up from your exhaust tip with a good-quality degreaser. If it has been neglected for a few years, you may have to apply and remove the degreaser a few times to completely remove the carbon from your exhaust, after which your car will run a lot more efficiently.
If you have the money and you’re planning on keeping your current vehicle for a long time, you might also consider having a stainless steel exhaust system fitted. This won’t be affected by carbon build-up and therefore won’t require any upkeep.
Change your spark plugs
Your car’s spark plugs perform a vital job and endure a lot of wear and tear over their lifetime. Eventually, they begin to wear out and this can seriously affect your vehicle’s performance, causing engine misfires, poor acceleration, and often your dashboard’s ‘check engine’ light to come on.
Furthermore, deteriorated spark plugs can decrease fuel efficiency by up to 30%, according to Motoring About. If your car has more than 60,000 miles on the clock, it’s time to change yours.
You can change your spark plugs yourself in about an hour with a few basic tools. Simply find the exact spark plug for your car by searching your reg in Autosessive’s spark plug finder and then follow the tips in this easy-to-follow guide to changing spark plugs from wikiHow.
So, there you have it: three simple bits of maintenance that will make your car more efficient. You can implement these all in an afternoon, and your next fuel bill is guaranteed to be less — a sure-fire sign that your carbon footprint has been reduced.