How to save fuel with the upcoming VAT increase

Posted on: Mar 28, 2018, in Blog

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For the first time in two decades South Africans will feel the pressure with the cost of living, as the VAT rate would increase one percentage point to 15%, as of April 1 2018. For many motorists, this means a hike in fuel costs. The cost of fuel will increase by 52c per litre; this is due to a 22c increase in the general fuel levy and a 30c per litre rise in the Road Accident Fund levy. While you can’t avoid paying more at the pumps, making the most of the fuel you put in your vehicle is one way of ensuring that you achieve the best possible fuel economy. Being economical about fuel will help save money, reduce oil dependence costs, reduce climate changes, and increase energy sustainability.

Be petrol wise

Never wait till the tank is fully empty before you make a stop at the patrol station. The fuller the tank is, the better the fuel mileage. Also remember not to fill up your fuel tank soon after the ground tanks at the station have been replenished. The process causes dirt at the bottom of the tanks that rises to the surface and this can cut down fuel efficiency significantly.

Drive Responsibly

Some fuel economy tips are related to how and where you drive your vehicle. Driving within the speed limits, avoiding unnecessary idling, using cruise control wherever possible and preventing sudden stops and starts can all help you improve fuel economy. It is also fuel-efficient to switch off the air conditioner once in a while and to let in the breeze especially when travelling outside the city limits.

Avoid Rush Hour

Try and avoid rush hour traffic by either leaving early or working remotely a couple of times a week. The constant idling and stop-start driving conditions hikes your fuel consumption.

Minimise vehicle usage

By combining together two or more errands, you can get work done faster and you will also cut down on the fuel used. Carpooling, walking or biking when the distance to be travelled is short are some other simple fuel saving tips that can be implemented. Using public transport, if applicable, are some fuel economy tips to keep in mind.

Don’t skip on your scheduled car services

If your car is running on old engine oil, breathing through a clogged air-filter and sucking petrol through a dirty fuel filter then it can never be expected to perform at its efficiency peak. Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that you religiously stick to the service intervals dictated in your vehicle’s user manual. Failure to do so will not just increase your overall fuel consumption, also decreasing your engine’s performance.

Fuel saving tips for truck drivers

Fuel makes up about 25 percent of the operating cost of a fleet and thus, saving even 2 or 3 percent in fuel costs of one truck can make a significant difference. As with other types of vehicles, the condition of the truck, the type of traffic encountered, and the weather will all be crucial in determining the amount of fuel being consumed. The truck or semi truck must be frequently checked and regular maintenance carried out to help improve fuel economy. Controlling engine speed is also one of the fuel economy tips suggested to commercial drivers.


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