Sunnybank Hills Car Care

Improve Fuel Economy

Poor Fuel economy, what types of fuels, common problems & solutions

What mechanical services can improve your economy? Fuel is used to power everything from cars to airplanes. It is the lifeline of the auto transportation system. As the technology advances, different fuels are being discovered to power vehicles. This article will present a detailed discussion on fuel.

Fuel Economy Fuel economy means fuel efficiency relationship between fuel consumed by an automobile and the distance it travelled. No quantities or units are defined in ISO 80000 Quantities and Units for fuel economy. Fuel consumption amount is expressed as urban, extra urban and combined. Increasing fuel economy is associated with car manufacturers but there are some ways you can increase fuel economy.

To increase fuel economy, it is recommended to:

  • Use lighter materials for parts such as crankshaft, pistons and gears
  • Use thin engine oil
  • Use coolant additives to increase the cooling system’s thermal efficiency
  • Replace tyres with low rolling resistance brands
  • Use low friction lubricants for brake fluid, engine oil and transmission fluid


Types of Fuels

Petrol – Petrol is also known as crude oil. It is the most used fuel because of its availability. Petrol allows car engines to be more efficient and deliver optimal performance. It is used in the form of refined gasoline. The disadvantage is the rising petrol price.

Diesel – Diesel powered engines are considered to be almost thirty percent more efficient than petrol engines. It means that fuel consumption will be less for every mile. According to the Australian Greenhouse Office, diesel engine is a major source of particle matter emission. It causes respiratory disease and cancer. However, modern diesel engines are made with particle filters making the fuel cleaner.

Ethanol – Ethanol is slowly gaining popularity because of its renewability factor. Ethanol is found in small parts with other gases. In addition, ethanol is also manually produced from grain and corn which can be regrown unlike petrol and diesel. A study estimates that ethanol can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by almost thirteen percent if it replaces petrol. In addition, ethanol produces approximately fifty percent less smog emissions than petrol. If ethanol is used, fuel economy can be twenty to thirty percent less than diesel and petrol.

LPG (Liquid Petroleum Gas) – LPG is a blend of butane and propane made from methane gas or from oil-refining by-products. It is best for small cars and light vans that are driven in the city or have high mileage. LPG is much cheaper than other car fuels. Petrol vehicles can be converted to LPG for a certain cost.

Hybrid or electric fuel cell – Hybrid is a petrol-electric engine which is cleaner and more efficient than a petrol and a diesel engine. A hybrid car can be driven solely on electric power but needs to be charged overnight. If hydrogen-powered cars are used, they will emit only water. Although hybrid cars are expensive, they are fuel efficient.

Common car fuel problems and solutions

People usually face many car fuel problems. With proper maintenance and services these problems can be avoided. Here is a list of common fuel problems:

Clogged Fuel Filters – If you are having difficulties in starting your car or your does not reach high speeds, clogged fuel filters can be the cause of this. Fuel filters should be replaced periodically. A standard is to replace them every year or every 30,000 miles. As the car grows old, fuel filters might need replacement more often. Any mechanic will be happy to change your car fuel filter.

Clogged Fuel Injectors – Car performance can be affected by dirt build up around the fuel injectors. Debris present inside the fuel tank can clog the injectors. This will restrict the flow of petrol or force the injectors to open too wide which can flood the engine. To keep fuel injectors clean, fuel system cleaners can be used. These are available widely from auto repair shops. The system should be cleaned every three or four months to avoid any problems.

Type of Petrol Used – The type of petrol you use can make a noticeable difference on the car’s performance. For example, using low quality petrol in a petrol engine can affect the engine as well as its performance.

What mechanical services can improve your economy?

Car maintenance is one of those things that should not be put off for a long time especially when it concerns your fuel costs and mileage. Here are a few mechanical services that can improve your fuel economy.

Car maintenance – Undertaking regular maintenance services, can save you about four percent on gas mileage – if a minor problem such as a bad spark plug is identified. If major issues are found, it can improve fuel efficiency by forty percent. In addition, cars need to be clean and waxed to improve aerodynamics. This will also improve fuel economy.

Tyres – Tyres can have a significant impact on fuel economy. Tyres need to be properly aligned and inflated. Any worn out tyre must be replaced. Different types of tyres also affect gas mileage. It is important to use low rolling resistance tyres. Ask a professional about tyres and their affect on gas mileage.

Tune up – Bringing your car to a mechanic for a tune up can improve fuel efficiency and mileage. This also helps in restoring a car’s life.

Fuel Injection System – Fuel injection system electronically controls the flow of fuel to the engine. If there are problems in the system such as clogged valves or the amount of time a fuel injector remains open can affect the performance of the engine and car as a whole. It is better to have the fuel injection system checked every year. Your fuel economy depends on the performance of the injection system.

About Sunnybank Hills Car Care

Our focus is to offer you the best car mechanical services for improving fuel economy. We have skilled technicians and mechanics who understand how important your car is to you. Our specialists provide you with diagnostics and maintenance tips on how to keep your car functioning properly as well as provide advice when you need servicing. Our specialists are trained in all types of cars including BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Toyota, Holden, Ford, Citroen, Hummer, Lexus, Honda, Mitsubishi, Mazda, and other brands. We are also offering promotional $149 service special (conditions apply).