Drive Green / What I Teach In
Look after your car
Stick to the manufacturer's service schedule, and get work carried out by a competent garage. Under-inflated tyres can increase your fuel consumption, so check them weekly. Also, keep an eye on your fuel consumption and investigate sudden changes.
Switch it off
Modern engines don't need to be warmed up before you start driving, so get in and drive off straightaway.
If you get stuck in traffic, switch the engine off. Air-conditioning, heated seats and other electric components also consume energy, so switch off whatever you don't need.
By keeping an eye on the road ahead, you can drive greener as well as safer. Always try to keep the car moving, and allow the engine to slow the car rather than using the brakes - this gives more time for the cars in front to move off, so you don't have to stop. Avoid having to brake suddenly and don't race between sets of traffic lights or junctions. Finally, use gravity - rather than the accelerator - to start the car rolling down slopes.
Lower your speed
Going no faster that the speed limit will save fuel, so why not try slowing down a bit more? You'll be less stressed and have a calmer journey. Cruise control can help you maintain a steady speed. Use the highest gear possible without letting the engine labour, and try changing straight from second to fourth gear, or third to fifth - this saves time, fuel and wear and tear on the clutch.