Efficient driving, from the perspective of fuel consumption, is determined by multiple parameters. One over which the transportation professional has the most control is maintenance of his or her vehicle. Keeping all elements of the vehicle in perfect condition, especially the most basic things such as the engine, the brake system or the tires, can contribute positively to reducing fuel usage.
All carriers are aware that proper maintenance to their vehicles can not only allow them to save fuel but also extends the life of their vehicles and reduces the cost of possible malfunctions. One of the key elements in controlling consumption is the tires. They must be at the correct pressure in order to avoid increasing the rolling resistance and, therefore, increasing the fuel expense; in addition, they must be replaced with new ones whenever they reach their maximum wear. It is also important for them to be properly aligned. A tire with the proper pressure and good alignment may reduce fuel consumption by 15% compared to one that is not in this condition.
Of equal, or greater, importance is maintaining the engine at its best performance. Defective maintenance can mean noticeably higher fuel consumption. Above all, every air, oil and fuel filter must be checked periodically in order to keep fuel consumption from being higher than absolutely necessary. Warming the engine up for one minute before putting it into gear also allows us to take care of all of the internal parts and, therefore, keeps one malfunctioning part from having a negative effect on fuel consumption.