For haulage companies, increased fuel efficiency can have a direct positive impact, on making daily operations not only much better, but also more profitable. And while there are many ways to increase fuel efficiency, the following scientifically proven tips should help you achieve your efficiency goals much quicker.
You can follow all those fancy instructions and techniques for increased fuel efficiency, but if your drivers do not know what they are doing, then it’s still all going down the drain. Haulage companies must focus on training their drivers first, in order to streamline their driving behaviour or fix whatever needs fixing as far as driving habits are concerned. For example, going over the speed limit unnecessarily (in any case, when does speeding become necessary?) can place undue stress on the vehicle’s mechanical parts, causing more wear and tear than it should normally sustain. Moreover, there are smart ways of getting from point A to B without sacrificing the integrity of the vehicle. And, of course, quick bursts of speed and other ‘bad’ driving methods can burn up more fuel and thereby increase your operational expenses in the long run. Train drivers and the rest will follow.
Use Driver Supportive Software and On-board Tools
In this day and age, it doesn’t make any sense to be a technological holdout, especially for technology-responsive businesses like haulage companies. There are now software systems that can be installed in the vehicle that help the driver navigate their path from origin to destination much more efficiently, thus avoiding fuel wastage and economising time spent on the road. Moreover, there are also software systems that work directly on minimising fuel consumption, such as the latest cruise control systems that can help achieve as much as four per cent in fuel savings. To put it in context, four per cent, when seen from the perspective of a multi-vehicle fleet consisting of dozens of heavy vehicles burning thousands of gallons of fuel, can mean tens of thousands of pounds in savings.
Conduct Regular and Stringent Vehicle Inspection
Regularly conducting vehicle inspection benefits not only haulage companies that are working to reduce fuel consumption or increase fuel efficiency – they also work for the everyday driver. In any case, haulers are more under pressure to ensure that the vehicles they use to transport cargo do not burn more fuel than necessary. Often, even the smallest things matter. An incorrectly adjusted part here and there can cause the vehicle to gobble up fuel, and if this goes on for days and weeks, imagine how much fuel is wasted.
For starters, check your vehicle for the alignment of the axle and wheels. As well, learn to adjust tyre pressure as improper pressure burns considerably more fuel. Check the brakes and the axle alignment of the trailer to avoid traction losses, which will have a direct impact on fuel efficiency, not to mention road safety. And, of course, make sure that your vehicles are of the correct specification to fit your daily usage. For example, usually, a faster rear-axle gear ratio means lower engine revs at cruising speed, which in turn means lower fuel consumption by as much as 10 per cent.