Farm Guide VIC : 2014-15
Easy ways to slash your fuel bill and save on maintenance costs With fuel prices escalating and increasing financial pressures on the farming industry now, more than ever, it’s important for farmers to follow some simple fuel efficient driving techniques to reduce the impact on their bottom line. While there is little you can do to change the actual price of fuel, changing the way you drive can cut costs and save on your maintenance bills. 69 Automotive Here are seven simple ways for truck and car drivers to improve their fuel economy: E – every time you set off, do it in the appropriate gear. It’s important to be sympathetic to your engine to get the most life out of it. If you’re travelling downhill it might not be appropriate to start in first gear. Remember, every time you change gears it is potentially using fuel which costs money. C – conduct a pre-departure check. Before starting your travel, it’s a good idea to check the vehicle to make sure it’s in good working condition. Checking over the exterior of your truck and engine won’t take long and will potentially save you money and time in the long run. Make sure your lights are working, your engine oil is topped up, tyres are inflated to the correct pressure and the engine belts are in good condition. O – only idle when absolutely necessary. While there is no hard and fast rule about the amount of time you should let your engine warm up, most modern vehicles don’t need a lot of time to idle when they first start up. This is especially important on farms as drivers often leave their truck running when they stop to do something. When you’re doing a hay run, turn the truck off at each stop and start it up again. N – note the road conditions. One of the best ways to save fuel is to plan ahead. This will reduce the need to brake heavily or accelerate. Every time you brake or accelerate it is going to cost you money. As a lot of farms can only be reached by unsealed roads, it’s even more important to stay alert. When you are travelling on a new route, be sure to check local traffic bulletins to see if any hazards have been reported.