With fuel prices fluctuating, the need to remain competitive while keeping operating costs low remains paramount for owner-operators and trucking companies. Since fuel is one of your largest operating expenses, efficient fuel utilization can be essential to help reduce costs for your business.
When it comes to reducing your fuel cost, there are several things that can be done to help cut your fuel costs and save money. The main two areas that it comes down to are either improving the fuel economy of already existing vehicles or acquiring new trucks with better MPG (miles per gallon).
Improving the fuel economy of your existing trucks is the area that we are going to focus on. Also, take a look at this article on how to make your truck more fuel efficient.
Here are five tips to reduce your fuel costs:
Reducing and restricting your speed is one of the major ways of reducing fuel costs. The implementation of speed restrictions in your truck can be helpful when it comes to saving fuel. This is due to the fact that slower speeds require less fuel, ultimately resulting in lower fuel expenditures.
The UMTRI study found that driving at high speeds can lower a vehicle’s mpg by as much as 30 percent. For example, reducing a truck’s average speed from 70 miles per hour to just 65 can translate into a reduction in fuel consumption by 6 percent while reducing by another 5 miles per hour to 60 will give you an additional reduction of 7.5 percent.
Telematics technology can also help truck drivers reduce fuel consumption by reminding them to slow down and stay within the speed limit. Reports can also provide trucking companies with a quick look at which drivers are violating their speeding policy.
Idling is when you leave your engine running while the vehicle isn’t moving, but you’re still burning fuel. To help reduce your fuel costs, you should avoid idling as much as possible.
If you or your truck drivers are sitting in the air conditioning between deliveries, they’re using an enormous amount of fuel — a quarter to a half-gallon of fuel per hour or more to be exact, according to data from the U.S. Department of Energy.
With your truck running when they probably don’t need to be, unnecessary consumption equates to unnecessary costs. Reminding yourself or your drivers to turn off their engine can have huge paybacks in the short and long term.
A study published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that fuel efficiency can be improved by an average of 0.6% up to a maximum of 3% with properly inflated tires (the correct psi). That’s because, for every 1 psi below recommended tire pressure, you lose about 0.2% in fuel efficiency.
Temperature affects tire pressure as well, so be sure to check tire pressure frequently, especially when the weather fluctuates. This is especially true in cold climates or extremely hot ones.
Yes, it’s as simple as that. Plan out your route before you go and eliminate unnecessary stops along the way. Also, instead of driving to a destination and driving home again before going back out, try and combine all your journeys into one.
One way that you can improve your overall fuel economy is by combining several smaller trips into one long journey.
You need to keep your car air filters clean to avoid wasting fuel, as dirty air filters cause your engine to work harder than it has to, which means more fuel is used.
You should follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to change these as needed to help boost your fuel economy.
Now that you know these fuel-saving tips, combine these tips with a great fuel card and you’ll be saving yourself even more money every year on your fuel cost.
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