Eco-Driving measures introduced to the UK driving test from 2008 require that new drivers have to show that they can drive with fuel-efficiency as well as safely. Learner Drivers are expected to know the basics of eco-driving such as accelerating and braking less harshly and changing gears sooner. So, make yourself aware of safe eco driving and you will save wear and tear on your car, save fuel, and maybe even help save the planet.
When mooting the introduction of eco-driving-to the driving test-in 2006, the Transport Secretary Alistair Darling said, that candidates would not pass or fail on eco-driving, but that he wanted it to be “as much a part of learning to drive as the three-point turn or checking your mirrors. Small changes like this can make a big difference to the effect drivers have on the environment.” The move followed a similar initiative in the Netherlands, where the “New Driving” programme claims that eco-driving can potentially reduce their fuel consumption by up to a third.
Research in the UK has shown that eco driving can save between 5 and 17 percent of fuel – and also cut emissions. The Department of Transport estimates that if all drivers followed the tips, CO2 (carbon dioxide) emissions from cars could be reduced by 8 per cent – or more than 5.5 Million tonnes of CO2 (carbon dioxide) a year.
Eco Driving Tips:
All you need to do is be aware of a few simple rules:
Eco driving means: look ahead, drive smoothly and avoid acceleration and heavy braking. This saves wear and tear on the car and makes for a more economic use of fuel.
Keep an eye on your gear-changing: When eco driving, revs should as far as possible kept at 2,500 rpm for petrol and 2,000 rpm for diesel vehicles.
Use the air conditioning sparingly.
When you start the engine, don’t keep it idling to heat up the engine. This wastes fuel and should not be necessary if you drive off gently and smoothly. Eco driving encourages basic good driving practice. It might mean you use your car a little bit less, but you save fuel on the way you drive as well as cutting out unnecessary journeys.
Remove anything from the vehicle which increases ‘drag’. Roof boxes and roof racks should only be in place when they are being used. And don’t use the boot as a permanent storage space! Eco driving is lighter driving.
When eco driving, consider sometimes avoiding short journeys, or link together several necessary journeys – cold engines use almost twice as much fuel as heated ones and catalytic converters can take up to five miles to become effective.
Before your journey: plan the route to avoid local works, congestion or losing your way. If you do hit a traffic jam – turn the engine off.
For eco driving, the most efficient speed for fuel consumption has been
And one of the most effective ways of eco driving: consider car-sharing for some journeys.
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