COULD YOU BE GETTING MORE MILES FOR YOUR MONEY?

With fuel prices on the rise, follow Motorcycle Directs tips and advice to reduce fuel consumption and save money at the pumps.

In May 2012, a spot check on fuel prices showed that the average price for a litre of unleaded at UK pumps was 137.51p, while a litre of diesel was 143.49p.1 Despite these dizzyingly high prices, they are actually lower than those recorded for the previous month when the AA claimed that the average family was having to spend more on fuelling up their car than on their weekly food bill.

Of course, lower running costs are just one of the reasons why many drivers take to two wheels and it’s no surprise that motorbike and scooter sales were on the rise early this year.2 But, with petrol price increases showing no real signs of abating, even motorcyclists need to find ways to economise on fuel.

One way of saving is to be more selective about where to buy fuel. Supermarkets regularly offer the cheapest pump prices so shop around and it is possible to save as much as four or five pence a litre.

Using a bike less and walking, cycling or catching the bus more often will help save fuel. Or, if you use your bike for a daily commute, why not organise a ‘bike share’ with another motorcyclist and take it in turns to ride pillion.

Alternatively, the best way to reduce fuel consumption is to break old habits and improve riding technique. The following tips provided by MotorCycle Direct are bound to help fuel go further.

  • Maintain your engine – a well-oiled engine, clean air filter, clean spark plugs and properly adjusted timing and valves will keep an engine ticking over nicely and avoid a bike becoming a gas guzzler.
  • Keep tyres inflated – ensure tyre pressure is maintained at the correct PSI. Underinflated tyres will cause motorcycle’s engine’s to work harder and use more fuel as well as impairing a bike’s road-holding ability.
  • Switch on and go – there’s no need to warm up the engine on most fuel-injected bikes so don’t waste fuel idling or revving up, just switch on and ride.
  • Drive smoothly – try to ride at constant speeds and avoid accelerating or braking hard and fuel economy should rise.
  • Empty the saddlebags – a lighter bike will use less fuel so don’t carry unnecessary stuff around in saddlebags. In fact ditch the saddlebags or your panniers too whenever possible.
  • Think aerodynamics – creating smooth lines will help reduce drag and save on fuel, so make a compact shape behind the windshield, wear tight-fitting riding gear that won’t trap air in the fabric and a helmet with a full-face visor which is more aerodynamic than an exposed face!

When oil companies have got road users over a barrel, anything that can be done to economise on fuel has to be a good thing. So give these ideas a try and start saving.

1 Source: http://www.petrolprices.com, Wednesday 16th May 2012
2 Source: http://www.rmif.co.uk

 

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