- Helping you drive happy

Take the time to slow down

Automotive columnist: , Updated:

Choose an appropriate mode of transportation for your trip
By choosing car sharing, public transport, cycling or walking, you help reduce the number of motor vehicles on the road.

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Check the state of the vehicle before you leave
Regular maintenance and inspections before a long trip increase the safety of the occupants and other  motorists. For instance, if you regularly make sure that the brakes are in good condition and that the tires are properly inflated,  your vehicle will handle better, consume less gas and be safer to drive.

Plan your trips
Trip planning limits stress, a factor that affects road safety, fuel efficiency and the environment. To plan your trip, determine where you have to go and the best way to get there.

Avoid unnecessary loads
Every object attached to the vehicle, such as a roof-mounted cargo carrier or a bike rack, increases the vehicle’s air resistance, which in turn increases its fuel consumption.

Warming up the engine without warming up the planet
To warm up your engine in the winter, simply drive at low speeds for a few kilometres, 30 seconds after start-up.

Drive smoothly and safely
By anticipating driving situations and avoiding unnecessary braking and abrupt accelerations, you can reduce fuel consumption by up to 20% and produce less greenhouse gasses.

Instead of idling, turn off the engine
Stops longer than 60 seconds justify turning off the engine. You’ll burn less fuel by restarting the engine than by letting it idle.

Photo: Jupiter Images