Five ways to reduce your petrol bill

Published by Nathalie Bonney on 08 March 2011.
Last updated on 02 May 2013

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Prices at the petrol pumps are high: the average cost for one litre of unleaded petrol is now £1.36, according to and it's not unheard of for some drivers to pay £1.47 at the moment.

This means drivers are now paying at least £8.60 more per tank of petrol, according to the AA.

But how can you reduce your fuel cost without having to ditch the car? Here are our top five tips:

1. Find the cheapest petrol pump in your area

Petrol prices can vary greatly from different petrol stations. For example, filling up along the motorway is notoriously expensive.

But there is a simple way to avoid getting mugged. Just type your postcode in at website to find out what nearby petrol stations are charging and head to the cheapest one - provided you're not driving a substantially greater distance to get there.

2. Stop speeding

Not driving above the speed limit is one of the most effective ways of making your tank last for longer. This is especially the case with motorway driving.

Aside from being illegal, driving at 80 miles per hour uses 25% more fuel than driving at 70 mph, according to the AA.

3. Keep your car in good nick

Your car should be serviced regularly so that it runs more efficiently. Check with your car's manual or garage if you are unsure how often this should be but generally an annual check is recommended - you can usually do this together with your MOT.

4. Clear out your boot

Unnecessary weight drags down your car's speed so where possible clear out your car boot's clutter and on motorway journeys close the windows to stop the air drag. Bear in mind on shorter local trips that air con eats up a lot of fuel, so in this instance you're better off opening windows.

Also, make sure your tyre pressure is sufficient as deflated tyres create a drag on your vehicle, meaning it has to work harder and therefore burn more fuel.

5. Move up a gear

Driving in a lower gear unnecessarily puts pressure on your engine so don't delay gear changes. In the future, it's likely that vehicles will be fitted with gear shift indicators that will let drivers know when is the most fuel efficient time to change gears.

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