How smarter driving habits can improve your summer road trips
Travelling by car or RV are popular modes of summer transportation. Many families throughout the province enjoy road trips to visit friends and loved ones, explore the great outdoors or to simply enjoy the cottage or countryside.
At CAA Saskatchewan, we’re always looking for ways to help Members lower their driving expenses, while keeping the environment a little more green, along the way. The number one way to ensure your vehicle operates at its most eco-friendly capacity? Follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule. Start by checking your tires. Look for signs of uneven wear, embedded objects that could cause leaks, and measure the tire pressure according to the manufacturer’s guidelines.
Check fluid levels, including engine oil and coolant, and power steering and transmission fluids, top up as needed. Don’t forget to look for fluid leaks around the car and under the engine. And keep an eye on your brakes. You can increase fuel economy by checking and fixing any brake issues.
Consider combining trips—plan all your stops in one trip. A vehicle is more fuel efficient when it’s warmed up, so several short trips with a cold engine can use twice as much gas than one longer trip.
Accelerate gently and don’t idle. Frequent jackrabbit starts and hard braking reduce travel time by only four percent, but increase fuel consumption by 39 percent. And idling burns one to two litres of gas per hour, while restarting your car only uses about 10 seconds worth of fuel. Turn off your vehicle when parked or waiting.
An average mid-size vehicle costs about $0.51 per kilometre in fuel. So, try carpooling: It will help you share gas costs, while reducing traffic congestion and your environmental impact.
Wherever the road takes you this season, we hope you enjoy the ride and travel safe! Learn more at caask.ca/ecodriving.
To learn more about CAA’s research and driving tips, visit caask.ca/safety.
–Suzanne Young, J.D., ICD.D
Chair, CAA Saskatchewan Board of Directors