Uganda: Does Driving in Neutral Save Fuel?


Hello Paul, does driving in neutral down a slope reduce fuel consumption or cause more fuel consumption? Elizabeth

Hello Elizabeth, coasting is driving your car in neutral (out of gear). Coasting while driving downhill may seem to save some fuel but when analysed carefully you will discover that you not only waste fuel but also risk damage of the gearbox and endangering yourself and other motorists or pedestrians.

When you coast downhill, your idling engine still consumes some fuel although you reduce engine load and fuel consumption slightly.

However, there are actions that reverse the small fuel saving gain. When you re-engage the drive gears, you will need to accelerate to match the load to engine power and this will cause a sudden increase in your fuel consumption rendering your effort worthless.

It is also common to accidentally step on the accelerator and race the engine, another cause of fuel wastage. You may accidentally damage your transmission when you re engage the drive gears from neutral, on the go.

Some older vehicles are not equipped with ‘shift on the go’ systems. A sudden shift into low gears or accidentally into parking from neutral may cause mechanical damage to the gearbox. Selecting neutral disengages the engine from the transmission which may reduce your ability to maneuver or respond to a road situation because you cannot accelerate or rely on engine power during emergency braking.

This may limit your ability to prevent a traffic accident. In order to save fuel you can adopt these fuel saving tips: drive sensibly and avoid aggressive acceleration. Do not overload your car and make sure your tyres have good tread depth and are correctly inflated.

Reduce engine power consumers such as air conditioning and keep your engine tuned and service up to date. Fuel your car with cleaner performance enhancing fuel designed to last longer.

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Publish date : 2018-11-01 07:38:58

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