The sky-rocketing cost of fuel has hit the daily commuter as well as the enthusiast equally badly. No doubt the portents are grim. However, don’t let this curb your passion to ride. Follow the simple tips given below to make sure you get the most out of every precious drop of petrol
Taking Good Care
Keep Her Tuned: Set the carburettor in such a way that the choke needs to be used at cold starts. This way the engine consumes the least amount of fuel possible. On the other hand, if the bike or scooter is fuel-injected, the system will automatically adjust the optimum air-fuel mixture.
Rubber Rules: Maintain the optimum tyre pressure, as prescribed by the bike maker. A slightly higher pressure (about two psi more) will not hamper the performance of your two-wheeler, but lower air pressure will reduce its fuel efficiency. Also check the surface of the tyres regularly.
Let Her Breathe Fresh Air: When the air-filter is clogged, the engine tends to run a rich mixture, thereby increasing fuel consumption. Keep the air-filter clean to allow the maximum airflow. This will improve fuel efficiency.
See The Signs: Pull out the spark-plugs occasionally and check their colour. (The electrodes should be white and the rim brown in colour.) If the electrodes appear brown and the rim black, the engine is running a rich mixture. Check the air-filter and the carburettor setting to improve combustion.
Keep Her Hydrated: When the engine is oil-starved, there is friction between the moving parts, which reduces its operating efficiency. Check the engine oil level regularly and replace it after every 3,500-4,000 kilometres, irrespective of the grade of oil used.
Chain Reaction: If the drive chain is dry, it increases drag, which reduces fuel efficiency. Lubricate the drive chain at least once a week and keep it tightened, but avoid over-tightening.
Be Smooth: Judge the distance from an obstacle and roll off the throttle in time to coast to a halt instead of braking hard. This will save fuel and also avoid unnecessary wear of the brakes.
Start-Stop: Turn the engine off at a red signal even if the countdown reads 10. It will not only save fuel, but also avoid air pollution.
Move To The Top: Do not over-rev the engine in lower gears. Shift up the gears quickly, but avoid lugging the engine.
Find Her Some Shade: Motorcycle tank shells are heat-sensitive as they are made of steel. Make sure the vehicle is parked in a shade to avoid losing fuel due to evaporation.
Feed Her Well: It is a no-brainer that the quality of fuel affects the operating efficiency of an engine. Buy fuel only from a reputed and reliable petrol pump even if it happens to be located some distance away from the place of your residence.
Be A Vigilant Buyer: It happens quite often that petrol pump attendants hoodwink the buyer by filling less fuel. Be vigilant and fight for every drop of fuel you pay for. It is your right.
Short Is Not Always Smart: The shortest route may not always be the best road to reach a destination, especially in India. Avoid roads known for bottlenecks. Try changing the time of your commute to avoid the office-goers’ rush hour. Make a note of the roads with potholes, narrow width, ongoing construction work, puddles or broken down lights. Choose your route considering these factors to complete your commute or journey smoothly in the least possible time.