Driving is an expensive necessity for many of us, especially in the summer. Even before you’ve sat behind the wheel you’ll have already paid out for your vehicle, insurance, road tax and breakdown cover, amongst other things.
To help keep costs down, we’ve put together our top five everyday tips to help save you money and drive on a budget…
If you drive around you’ll soon notice that fuel prices vary considerably between forecourts, even within the space of a couple of miles. If you need to fill up, check the price at local filling stations on your journey and make sure you’re getting the best deal.
Look out for cashback promotions and loyalty schemes at supermarkets. It’s also worth trying to avoid filling up at motorway service stations, as these tend to be the most expensive.
It might sound tedious, but this simple check could save you lots of money in the long-run. Tyres underinflated by just 15psi can use up to 6% more fuel, which equates to an additional 26 miles from a 60-litre tank of fuel. If your tyres are properly inflated, this saving can soon add up over the course of a year.
Most filling stations have facilities where you can inflate the tyres yourself, or you could buy your own electric pump to check and inflate at home.
These days there are plenty of apps on the market that help you make better choices when it comes to finding cheap parking spots. So if you’ve been spending a fortune for the same old parking place, stop and try somewhere cheaper.
Another good idea is to use your local town or city’s Park and Ride/Walk/Cycle if you’re heading to the high street. These can save you money and help you get fitter, so it’s win win!
It might sound obvious but the heavier the car, the more fuel you use. For an average car, every 50kg of extra weight equates to a 2% increase in your fuel consumption, so make sure you’re not carrying any excess weight around with you.
That means clearing your boot of anything you don’t need, like lingering purchases from the DIY store or things you’ve been meaning to take to the tip for months. And if you’ve got a roof rack but aren’t using it, take it off.
It might be tempting to quickly whizz through the carwash while you’re filling up the tank, or head down to the local hand-wash to get a better shine. But these washes can soon add up, especially if you’re someone who likes their car to look its best.
Invest in a decent car wash kit, including some proper leather shammies, and do it yourself. You’ll save money in the long-run, and if you’ve got kids, it can be a great way to keep them entertained for an hour.
Another way to save on car-related costs is to make simple repairs yourself. We know this sounds scary, but luckily for you, we’ve created a little DIY guide for checking and repairing your car.