'Lazy' motoring mistake could be ‘battering your fuel economy by up to 10 percent’

4 mins read

Although the winter weather is setting in, on sunnier days there is still the chance of your car becoming hot and stuffy on a long drive. While air conditioning is a saviour on such days, being complacent over when and how you use it could be costing you.

Mat Watson is the chief content officer at carwow and one of the driving forces behind the Youtube page of the same name, sharing handy tips for motorists across the nation.

When it comes to saving money, his number one tip is to be mindful of how you are using the various functions your car offers.

Speaking to Express.co.uk, he said: “Thinking about how you’re using your car will pay dividends, and turning the air conditioning off when you don’t need it is a great example.

“It’s too easy to be lazy and just leave it running, but it could be battering your fuel economy by up to 10 percent.”

READ MORE: Drivers urged to follow gear-changing trick that slashes fuel costs

“At this point, the refrigerant turns into a liquid and any impurities are removed.

“The liquid reaches a thermal expansion valve where the liquid flow can be limited. This gives you control over the internal temperature of the car.

“Finally, the liquid is turned into vapour where it can travel through evaporation coils to be blown through the vents as nicely chilled air.

“The refrigerant returns to a gas and the whole process can be repeated again to provide constant cool air.”

However, there are some times when using the air conditioning is actually more cost-effective than opening the windows.

Mat said: “If it’s hot, using air conditioning is better than having the windows open, especially at a higher speed.”

However, much like air conditioning, warming your car up on wintery days can also have an impact on how much fuel your motor goes through.

Heated seats, heated steering wheels, heated windscreens and anything else which heats up will end up using extra fuel.

Small changes to make your car more fuel efficient

Before setting off on a long journey, Mat urges drivers to think about how they can boost their car’s functionality.

The heavier your car is, the more fuel it will use trying to get from A to B.

Anything you can do to make your car lighter will improve its efficiency.

He explained: “Think about what you don’t need. Is that roof box still there from the holiday, adding weight and acting as a huge sail on top of the car?

“Even roof bars make a surprising difference. Or is there a load of heavy stuff in the boot that you don’t need to be dragging everywhere you go?”

Making small adjustments to your car can lessen the load it is carrying, thus reducing how much fuel it consumes while on the road.

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