How Can I Improve My Car's Emissions?
Our current lifestyles demand that everything is done now, that speed is of the utmost importance and getting somewhere-physically or in life in general, means driving or being driven. It’s difficult to think about the planet when the kids are late for school and you are late for work. “Let’s all just bundle into the car and I will drop you off on the way!” And so we charge off, leaving a plume of smoke pouring out of the exhaust.
Now, we can all relate to this anecdote, so if we have to use our cars for many and varied reasons, how can we improve the car’s emissions in order to minimize the impact on the environment? The EU has made considerable progress in the development of new car technology and regulations, explains Cranbrook Cars, a business that performs Engine Decontamination Treatments in Cranbrook, but they say:
“We need to move beyond vehicle technology alone by also looking at how vehicles are used.”
Here are a few handy tips:
1. Drive carefully:
If you are fortunate enough to have an inbuilt monitor, take notice of what it tells you about your driving style.
If not, small changes such as reducing revving, changing gears sooner and slowing down will reduce emissions and wear and tear on your engine.
2. Switch off the engine:
If you are parked or stuck in traffic for longer than a minute, switch the engine off. It takes less fuel to restart than to keep the engine idling for long periods. Also, try to be especially considerate when parked outside schools or hospitals. Take a look at this research on pollution outside some schools in America.
3. Use additives to clean your fuel/injectors:
There are many products that can be used to remove the build-up of deposits that cause unwanted emissions from your car’s engine. Have a look at the range of inexpensive products for sale here.
If you are unsure of how to apply such products, there are handy videos on YouTube, such as this one from RAC.
4. Use premium fuels:
Another easy option is to use a premium range of fuel for your car. These superior fuels are more expensive, but contain cleaning agents that will reduce emissions and improve the performance of your car. It’s a good idea to try different types of fuel to see which one is best for your make of car.
5. Check your tires:
Having tires that are inflated to the correct specification for your vehicle will improve the performance of your car as well as reduce emissions. Low tire pressure increases fuel consumption so this is an easy win-win for you and the environment.
6. Change the engine oil and check your filters:
Oil lubricates, cleans and cools a car’s engine and doing all of that is pretty dirty work. Your engine oil needs to be changed at regular intervals. The necessary information about changing the oil can be found in the manufacturer’s handbook. This may need to be carried out by a professional who will change your oil/air & fuel filters in a standard service.
A clean air filter is particularly important for reducing emissions.
7. Reduce the use of the air conditioner:
Did you know that by using the air conditioner less, you can reduce your fuel consumption by up to 20%? On a long journey, this amounts to a considerable saving on fuel and a large reduction on emissions.
8. Monitor your emissions:
As a responsible car user and inhabitant of planet Earth, it’s possible to check your car’s emissions so that you can make informed decisions about the impact your car is making on the environment.
It is also a good idea to have this information when planning a trip to a major city, like London. There are congestion charges for certain vehicles and Transport for London has a handy website where you can check whether your car meets the emissions standards.
9. Stop using your car:
Common sense tells us that NOT using a car is the most efficient way to reduce emissions. Even though car engineers and manufacturers are working tirelessly to design more efficient cars, it is impossible to completely eradicate emissions.
So, we could walk more. Think about joining a carpool, or start one yourself! Using social media, it is very easy to find information about established carpools in your local area. Maybe you could even share taxis to work or, when going out for the evening. If you have a reliable bus service in your area, consider using that yourself or for promoting independence in your children.
It turns out that we have many choices when it comes to reducing our car’s emissions. There are technological options and simple DIY products that can be bought on the internet. Governments are trying to assist us by promoting car scrapping schemes and reduced emissions zones in cities and we can choose healthy lifestyle options such as walking more often and helping our planet in the process.