With gas prices steadily increasing, it is important that automobile owners increase their fuel mileage by increasing their car’s efficiency. Thankfully, with advanced technology and the advent of diesel fuel injection, cars perform significantly better, which in turn helps car owners save up on fuel costs.
How a diesel pump injection system works
The injection system design heavily influences the performance of diesel engines. How the fuel is delivered makes a significant difference in engine performance, emissions, and noise characteristics. Unlike its spark-ignited engine counterpart, the diesel pump injection system delivers fuel under extremely high injection pressures, which means that automobiles are able to withstand higher stresses and perform well for extended durations.
Crucial to the efficacy of the engine to effectively make use of the fuel pumped into it is the timing of the injection (it must be controlled and done at the proper time) and the amount of fuel injected (the correct amount must be delivered to meet the engine’s power requirement, so injection metering must be highly controlled).
This technology directly injects the diesel fuel into the cylinder, which prevents excessive heat that damages the engine, making cars with diesel engines superior in terms of performance than those with gas engines.
Here are helpful tips on how you can get the best mileage and save up on fuel:
Make sure the tyres are set up to the proper inflation.
Cars that are properly inflated reduce fuel consumption by a minimum of 3%. Tyres lose about 1 PSI monthly, and during cold weather decreases pressure due to the thermal air contraction. Properly inflated tyres also help you avoid uneven wear on the tread, which is why it is essential that you check your tyres a few times a month, preferably weekly.
Keep in mind that it is best to inflate first thing in the morning or when you’ve driven less than two miles, so your reading will be accurate. If it is hot outside or if you have been driving for several hours already, it is recommended that you add 3 PSI. When in doubt, inflate to the pressure recommended by your car’s manual, or the sticker on your driver-side door post. The reading stamped on the tyre is the maximum pressure and not the recommended, so be extra careful.
Tune up your engine regularly
A properly tuned engine maximises power and enhances fuel efficiency greatly. Make sure to keep good spark plugs in the engine, and be conscientious in changing the oil on time and making sure that the air filter is clean. As with everything, prevention is better than cure, so it is always best to address car issues early on before they become major problems that can affect your car’s performance, as well as your fuel consumption.
Check the condition of your engine air filter and fuel filter
A dirty filter greatly reduces your car’s fuel economy, and worse, may even cause the engine to stall when idling. Avoid dust clouds and make sure that your air filter is always clog-free.
Speaking of filters, it is also best if you can replace the fuel filter according to the car manufacturer’s recommended schedule, as this will help tremendously in enhancing fuel efficiency.
Lighten your car’s load
One of the biggest causes of kinetic energy in non-hybrid cars is weight. Keep in mind that an extra 100 pounds increase fuel consumption by up to 2%, especially in stop-and-go driving. Unpack unnecessary things from your car and keep only those that you absolutely need, especially for long drives.
Purchase only quality fuel
No two fuels are the same, and while it can be extremely tempting to go for the discount brand fuel, as it saves you a few cents per litre or gallon, it may contain a higher percentage of ethanol, which burns at a faster rate, so you use up more fuel in a shorter amount of time. It is recommended that you compare the mileage between fuel brands and determine what is best for your car.
Use your air conditioner wisely
Using your air conditioner in stop-and-go city driving causes the engine to work hard and consume more fuel than usual. In highway speeds, however, cars get better mileage with the air-conditioning on and the windows rolled up. This is because the drag caused by windows rolled down at high speed reduces fuel efficiency more than the use of the air conditioning.
Avoid excessive idling and braking unnecessarily
Idling a vehicle wastes a significant amount of fuel – even if you are just warming up the engine. The best way to warm up a vehicle is to drive it slowly until it reaches proper operating temperature. When the weather is very cold, idling the engine for a minute or two is sufficient.
On the other hand, excessive braking wastes energy from fuel that you have already burned. Accelerating after braking consumes more fuel than driving at a constant speed, so brake with caution at all times.
Plan your trips ahead of time
Before you go somewhere, choose your route carefully. Delays due to traffic lights and congestion can be minimised. It is also ideal if you can make trips during non-rush hours so that your trip will be as smooth and as efficient as possible. Taking the route with the fewest stops and turns, and taking the highway in preference to city streets is always helpful in maximising your fuel mileage.
Accelerate smoothly, with moderate throttle
Engines are most efficient with moderately high throttle and at RPMs up to their power peak, usually at 4k to 5k RMP for small to mid-sized engines. If you are driving a manual transmission vehicle, practice shifting to higher gears as soon as you reach your desired speed by skipping intermediate gears. This practice is called short-shifting and helps a lot in minimising your fuel consumption.
Use these tips, and you’ll be maximising your fuel mileage in no time!
This is exclusively written for CarReviewsncare.com by FremantleFuel.com.au specializes in diesel fuel injection located in Perth, Australia.