Ways Of Minimising Fuel Consumption Following the Recent Hike in Petrol Prices | AutoRob

Ways Of Minimising Fuel Consumption Following the Recent Hike in Petrol Prices

The recent hike in petrol price from Ksh 113.37 in August to the current range of Ksh 128.7 to Ksh 140 in places like Mandera, has seen many Kenyans enraged. Car ownership is no longer for a select few in the society. More people now own cars thanks to the convenience that come along with them. Those who are not part of the above lot have also been affected as bus and matatu fare prices have also gone up by say ksh 10 or ksh 20. Cab fare is also up by ksh 100.

 If you ask me,  the hike in petroleum price is a little bit ironic considering we were celebrating the discovery of oil in Turkana just a few months ago. The more disappointing bit, however, is that these prices could go even higher, what with the Ministry of Petroleum claiming it used an erroneous formula which yielded lower prices than expected. Nevertheless, fear not for this article is going to show you how to minimize fuel consumption in a bid to save your Kenyan pockets.

The Story Behind The Fuel Price Hike

The country is currently experiencing a standoff between the government arms’. If you remember your G.H.C.R.E or Social Studies well, you know there are three arms of the government; the judiciary, the legislature, and the executive. In the ongoing battle of fuel prices, the legislature and the judiciary system are on one side, championing for the reduction of oil prices. The executive arm, however, is not willing to budge. 

Why?  You see,  the Kenyan Government took a loan from the International Monetary Fund. Part of the loan's documentation included a clause about the IMF getting 16% V. A.T from previously exempted sectors including energy and consequently petroleum products. In actual sense, the executive is simply trying to honor the terms and conditions of the loan. The downside to this is the high cost of fuel. So while the legislature and the judiciary are fighting against the IMF and the executive, the common mwananchi is suffering.  A perfect example of that Swahili saying we all grew up saying, ‘Fahali wawili wakipigana, nyasi huumia.’

Hacks To Minimize your Fuel Consumption

You don't necessarily need to own own the very expensive solar powered cars or the Tesla electric models in order to save on the cost of fuel. Simple fuel saving tips are available that can help ensure you have a little extra money available for other uses. Below is a compilation of some of these very helpful tips.

Use The Recommended Fuel and Oil
Choose the the right octane gas for your car according to the manufacturers prescription. There is no need to buy premium gas, which is usually very expensive and may not be compatible with your car. Using the recommended motor oil by the manufacturer has been shown to increase a car's gas mileage, by approximately two percent . If your manufacturer directs you to use fuel with the least octane number, use that. Tests have already been done and a determination made that a car’s best performance is achieved with a specific fuel and oil type.

Regular Servicing Of Your Car

Studies according to Earth Easy, have shown that poorly maintained cars use up 30 percent more fuel compared to well-maintained ones. A well-serviced engine operates efficiently. High efficiency means that less fuel is consumed by the car regardless of the engine size. Worn out parts such as air filters, fuel injectors, spark plugs and oxygen sensors need to be replaced regularly. Replacing these parts when worn out, helps in trimming fuel delivery which in turn reduces the amount of fuel consumption. The next time warning light shows, make sure you car is serviced to ensure maximum efficiency.

Employ Drag Reduction Techniques
Poor aerodynamics caused by air drags make the car use a lot of power which in turn increases fuel consumption. Make sure your tires are properly inflated as per the recommended pressure. Poorly inflated tires have a higher rolling resistance. This makes the car use up more energy and hence more fuel. If possible, fit narrow wheels in your car. These cut through the air easily when driving, therefore, minimizing resistance.

Do away with car additions such as spoilers, roof racks, and storage accessories. They may have the effect of increasing the car’s aesthetics, but they affect the car's aerodynamic drag and weight. This, in turn, has the effect of increasing the car’s fuel consumption.

The allure of wanting to leave one hand hanging outside while driving may feel cool. Unfortunately and unknown to many, open windows actually have an effect of increasing fuel consumption as they increase resistance. Next time you are on the road make sure you drive with windows closed if you want to make fuel savings.

Proper Planning Of Trips
Always plan ahead before taking off with your car to different destinations. Proper planning helps you avoid unnecessary traffic jams that lead to high fuel consumption. Take off before peak hours or find routes with the least traffic ahead of traveling. Proper planning also means you won't have to do errands repeatedly.

Everyone has had that moment when you've arrived home and then remembered that one thing you were to buy but forgot. Having to go back and get it means more fuel is going consumed. Proper planning means you'll have all your errands planned before, hence no need to make additional trips.

This has an effect of ensuring that your fuel consumption remains manageable. Try going on foot for errands within walking distances. This can also really be helpful to both your health and finances in terms of saving

Avoid Speeding

The adrenaline rush that comes with driving fast and doing stunts like drifting is undoubtedly amazing.  However, speeding actually increases your car’s fuel consumption rate.  A mere increase from say driving at 90km/hr to driving at 120km/hr increases fuel consumption rate by 20%. The recommended speed for trucks and most cars is somewhere between 50km/hr and 80km/hr. See, when the government imposed the 80km/hr speed limit for PSVs,  it wasn't just for your safety, it also saves on fuel money.

Saving that little extra cash from lower fuel consumption can really be helpful in this tough economy. You don't have to incur extra costs by buying solar powered cars, or buying a new, more fuel efficient models. Just follow the above simple measures and see your fuel expenses come down.


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