Cost of fuel deters drivers from filling up

27 November 2013

Nearly a third (30%) of motorists wait until the fuel warning light comes on before filling up their cars with petrol - and 71% say they do this because of the high cost of petrol, according to a new poll.

Nearly one in four (23%) of the 2,000 motorists who took part in the study by car insurance specialist Admiral have completely run out of petrol before they could get to a petrol station - with one in 10 (9%) doing this on more than one occasion.

Drivers are cautious about how much they splurge on petrol, with one in three (34%) setting themselves a monthly budget. The average motorist limits how much they spend on fuel to £78.35 a month - and half (51%) manage to stick to it.

As well as setting a budget, drivers also try to drive more economically, with most drivers (79%) trying to save on the cost of fuel by emptying their boot, not using their air con, and driving at lower speeds on the motorway.

While the poll reveals most motorists believe they have 23 miles left when the fuel warning light comes on, this can vary greatly from car to car and running dry could damage your engine.

Peace of mind

"It's not a great idea to let your fuel get too low as, depending on your car, you may find you're sucking up impurities from the bottom of the tank into the engine," said Admiral's managing director, Sue Longthorn.

"And whether you fill up at a quarter of a tank or when the fuel light illuminates, the overall amount you pay for the fuel is the same, so for peace of mind it's best to fill up before the red light comes on."

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