One of the biggest carbon emitters on the planet is sitting your garage.
How you use your car (be it a humble compact to a full-sized SUV) is one of the major factors determining your carbon footprint – the impact you have on the environment.
Though cars are becoming more and more fuel efficient (and in many models electric), the gas-guzzling machines are still a fact of life that can’t be avoided. However, you can minimize your environmental impact from driving by trying out some of the following tips.
Don’t waste fuel by overloading your ride
The more stuff you jam into your car, the heavier it will be. And the heavier it will be, the more fuel it will take to get around from Point A to Point B. So think twice about packing everything into your vehicle.
Try to limit your load to a spare tire, first aid kit, repair kit or other safety equipment and don’t load your roof rack unless absolutely necessary.
Check your exhaust emissions
Our cars’ exhaust systems limit the emissions that came out of the tailpipe, but over time exhaust systems can wear down. It’s important to have your exhaust and emissions parts check regularly, especially your catalytic converter.
Regular service for optimal results
The little things count when it comes to car maintenance and making sure your vehicle isn’t guzzling more gas than it absolutely needs. To pick one example, keeping your tires inflated at the manufacturer’s designated level will make sure you’re not over-consuming gas.
Keep your engine humming – check the oil
Cars can be picky when it comes to the type of oil for their engine, but this is for a good reason. Putting the wrong type of oil in your car’s engine will see it run under par. It’s also good to opt for synthetic motor oil, as this will cut down on wear and tear and also give your gas mileage a bump.
Don’t shift too soon
A little known fact of eco-friendly driving is that shifting gears at the wrong time can reduce your MPG to the tune of one or two percent per error. Instead, shift only when your engine gives you feedback telling you the time is right to change gears.
The easiest way to make a better impact with your car? It’s simple: Use it less! If you can opt to take public transit, a bicycle, or simply walk to your destination, you’ll be able to greatly reduce your carbon footprint over time.