As the new year sets in, many families are considering purchasing a new vehicle to replace their outdated gas guzzlers. Are you one of them?
An international study by Unilever revealed that one-third of consumers are now buying from brands based on their social and environmental impact. However, regardless of the type of car you’re currently driving, there are many steps you can take to improve its efficiency and lower your carbon footprint. Here are some quick ideas for improving your car’s financial and environmental efficiency this year!
Prioritize Proper Maintenance
First, if you’ve ever found yourself slacking on keeping up with routine maintenance such as oil changes, you’ll have to be more careful this year. Each manufacturer has different interval recommendations regarding oil change frequencies, but abiding by them is always the best move for both the environment and your vehicle’s lifespan. This goes for tire rotations as well.
“Drivers should learn these guidelines and adhere to them, as sticking to maintenance schedules can help vehicles operate more smoothly and efficiently, conserving fuel as a result,” says The Dayton Daily News.
And a tip from me (Lisa) – use a shop or person you trust for care of your vehicle. After trying different repair shops, I found one that I knew I could trust. I’ve been going to that same place for years and I know they would never tell me to get a service done that my car didn’t need!
Many Americans feel as though they’re simply driving way too much (especially when you have kids that are involved in many activities!). In fact, about 14% of Americans have even changed jobs to shorten their commutes. This tip isn’t possible for every situation, of course, but if you anticipate having to make multiple trips during the day, such as grocery shopping, picking up your children from school, or attending appointments, it can often be much more efficient to get these tasks taken care of all at once. You won’t have to repeatedly start your car, and the mileage you’ll save translates to more money in your wallet and a longer lifespan for your vehicle. Start combining tasks into a single car trip and you’ll see for yourself just how much more efficient it is.
Buy With The Environment In Mind
If you do decide to invest in a new vehicle this year, it only makes sense to choose one of the countless models that have significantly improved their eco-friendly features. According to Autotrader’s Car Buyer of the Future study, 84% of consumers prefer to buy a car in person, and having a list of models or brands you’re interested in can be essential before stepping foot into a dealership. You should also keep your personal driving habits in mind to help you make an informed decision that you’ll be happy with.
“If the bulk of your driving is commuting alone to work, then a small, fuel-efficient vehicle may be more eco-friendly and practical than a large SUV. Investigate electric cars and hybrid models to determine if either option is suited to your driving habits,” says The Dayton Daily News.
Ultimately, being aware of the small yet significant steps you can take to lower your personal automotive carbon footprint can help you to remain an eco-conscious driver for years to come.