Switch to stock size and alloy wheels to increase fuel efficiency

Who is not complaining and hurting when you are at the pump? Due to circumstances out of our control, the price of gasoline, diesel, and even LPG is spiraling out of control. It hurts me to say this, but it is still on the way up. 

Yes, oil and products derived from it are not done inflicting financial and (sometimes) actual pain. The only way to ease the burden is by being proactive about it. Moaning and groaning won’t help, so do what you can to get more kilometers out of every liter you put into your vehicle.

Proper car maintenance is now priority number one. Regularly check your engine to ensure it’s always in tip-top shape. If you’re unsure of what to look out for, check this article out. But, if you don’t dare DIY it, bring it over to the dealership or to your trusted mechanic. They will know what to do. If you need driving tips, we have that too.

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Tire size

What you don’t read about a lot is information on how the type of tires you use affects your fuel consumption. Just because they’re round and rubber does not mean they do not have an impact. The weight of your wheels plays a heavy part as well. Both these components will affect your mileage by as much as 10%.

If your drive is purely in the city, don’t get large tires (or switch to smaller ones). These are heavier and require more engine power to roll it from a standstill in stop-and-go traffic. Rush hour jam on EDSA already consumes 20% more fuel. Factor in the tire weight and you might just opt to walk to work.

It’s the other way around when you are on the highway a lot. Slightly larger diameter tires cover longer distances, so it will take less effort from the engine to travel farther. But don’t go crazy and put ginormous tires on your car. Always take into account the correct offset and keep the new tire as close to stock height as possible.

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Rolling resistance

A tire’s rolling resistance is affected by two things, its deformation when it rolls on a surface (which is why it is crucial to keep it properly inflated for a smooth rotation) and the tread pattern. Pickup trucks with all-terrain or off-road tires that use chunky tread suffer from this. Deep grooves of the tread pattern impede airflow over the tire. It is not a big problem at slow speeds. But when the pace picks up, the engine will exert extra effort to roll tires like these.

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Wheel weight

Finally, we get to the wheels. Steel is obviously heavier than alloy, so switch to the latter when you get the chance. Check your vehicle to see what it has, but most likely you have aluminum alloy wheels anyway. Lighter wheels require less energy to build speed and less torque to roll. That equals more gas in the tank and more money in your pocket. But just like your tires, pick your wheels based on the vehicle’s weight, load capacity, and the tire size that fits the wheel well.

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I know 10% to 20% savings doesn’t really seem like a lot. But in this fuel crisis, I believe every drop counts. If you agree, then better make these changes. It won’t even be that hard unless you sold the stock wheels your vehicle came with.

If you’re driving a pickup truck, you might need to spring for new tires. It might be pricey, but with the price of oil forecast to hit $211 per barrel by December 2022 (it’s now at $130), I think it’ll be worth it