Each of his visits to a gas station is a pain for the motorist. However, if we are to believe the statistics of the INSEE, the volume of fuel that a French can afford with an hour of minimum wage has continued to increase over the past fifty years: it would even have doubled between 1973 and 2018. For their part, technical progress does more than compensate for the weight gain of our vehicles. The reduced appetite of modern engines explains why the fuel item barely weighs more on the budget of families who nevertheless cover nearly twice as many kilometers as at the beginning of the 1970s.
These figures should help motorists to put into perspective the impact of rising fuel prices on their purchasing power. To preserve it more, they can decide to act on their driving habits. The recipes for eco-driving are far more effective at reducing an engine’s appetite than any of those uneconomic “fuel savers”. Let it be said, real savings come at the cost of serious self-discipline!
Rule N ° 1: shut off the engine during a prolonged shutdown
This recommendation makes sense. Yet it comes up against a belief as old as it is outdated: restarting an engine after a brief stop would burn more fuel than it consumes for a minute. This assertion lost all validity with the generalization in the early 1990s of the electronic fuel injection system on gasoline engines. Because it operates with excess air, the Diesel engine is even less likely to overconsume when restarted.
However, too many motorists prefer to leave their engine running when they queue at a gas station or at an American restaurant. An implacable factor favors this practice: the generalization of air conditioning. Just look at the number of cars that park with their engines running during the lunch break. Summer and winter alike, artisans and business travelers take refuge there to enjoy their sandwiches away from the heat of the sun or the bite of the cold. All the more readily since, very often, it is their employer who pays for their fuel.
Rule N ° 2: leave the Start & Stop to act, automatic stop-start system
This system annoys more than one (because of the jolts it generates) but it has the potential to save nearly half a liter per hundred kilometers on a vehicle that travels most of the time in town. To meditate.
The computer controls the switching off of the ignition (or the stopping of the diesel supply pump on a Diesel) as soon as the vehicle speed falls below 5 km / h. It is also necessary to place the gear lever in neutral and release the clutch pedal. Note that these automatic stop-start systems are becoming more and more discreet over the generations.
Disadvantage, the automatic stop-start function involves the fitting by the manufacturer of a reinforced battery, heavier and appreciably more expensive. To avoid a nasty surprise, the motorist will do well to invest in a trickle charger capable of extending the battery life expectancy. His secret? A succession of low intensity pulses drops the sulphate which aggregates on the lead plates and starts the charging capacity.
Rule N ° 3: in the morning, I do not heat the mill!
In the series of misconceptions that should be twisted, now let’s move on to this bad habit of letting the engine warm up at idle. It’s bad for the planet and bad for your wallet!