Cars and Carbon: 5 Handy Tips to Reduce Your Car’s Environmental Impact

1.       Minimise vehicle use where possible The most effective way is to reduce your reliance on your vehicle.  Plan your trip to ensure there are no wasteful trips i.e. 5 short errands should be merged into a longer outing by organising your day.  Car pool with friends or neighbours if viable to replace trips to work, school, Saturday sports and so on. This can further reduce emissions and monetary cost. Sell that second car if possible. A spare car can often lead to unnecessary expenses on the family budget as well as unnecessary use at times. If the need does arise, car rental in Sydney is a viable option and available at increasingly low rates. Take a ride! With the increase in cycle ways in Sydney, your bike can help you cover short trips and errands, increasing you level of fitness as a bonus.

2.       Drive in a smooth and steady manner Ensuring that your car is driven at a steady speed as far as possible (i.e. avoiding unnecessary accelerating and decelerating) will optimise your use of fuel. During shorter trips be observant on the road and aim to flow with the traffic. Avoid breaking late and always decelerate early when approaching traffic, lights, roundabouts etc. On the open road, on longer trips, driving at a steady speed of 90 km/h will result in optimum fuel economy. Driving above this level can increase consumption by almost 25% proving very uneconomical. 3.       Maintain your vehicle Ensure that your vehicle is regularly serviced by a reputable service provider.  Use genuine consumables and recommended fuels. This will not only ensure the longevity of your asset but also that you get a good resale value (keep your records to ensure this). Check your tyres at least once a month and before long trips. Keep a manual in your vehicle and keep tyres at recommended levels at all times to optimise fuel economy. To avoid down time during servicing, you can organise car hire in Sydney via your service centre in most cases. 4.       Minimise weight and drag on the vehicle Remove unnecessary weight such as that golf kit and roof racks. Carrying less will mean burning less fuel unnecessarily. Reducing wind drag is also a good way of optimising fuel use, keeping windows up on freeways is one such way. If travelling between 80 km/h and 90 km/h, testing suggests using air-conditioning to cool the car is more economical than having windows down. 5.       Always consider options and alternatives Whilst the family car remains the favoured option, we should start considering greener options to help make our small difference to the environment.  If practical, jump on a train or catch a bus the next time you have an errand to run.  If it involves the family, take advantage of State Transit specials such as the current Family Funday Sunday pass costing only $2.50 per person for the day across the network. If travelling in a group, especially over a longer distance, renting an 8 seater is good option. Not only is it more social, it may allow you to travel in one vehicle rather than two, saving considerable amounts in fuel costs. Great rates are now available for car hire in Sydney making this a viable option.