If you live somewhere cold, you’ve probably noticed that your fuel economy isn’t as good in cold weather as when it’s warm. This is largely because cold weather makes your engine work harder—it takes longer to heat up and stay warm while driving, and this uses more fuel. Here are some tips on improving fuel economy in cold weather.
One thing you can do is make sure you tire pressure is correct. Low tire pressure not only makes it more dangerous to drive in bad conditions because it reduces tire traction, it also makes more work for the engine.
You can also improve fuel economy by reducing weight as much as possible. If you’re worried about being tossed around in high winds, keep some weight in your car, but don’t overdo it—this also puts pressure on the engine.
Before winter starts, have your battery tested to make sure it’s working well. A bad battery forces the engine to work harder to maintain the charge. Parking in a garage if you can will also help, since it will stay warmer than if you’re parked outside.
Avoid idling to wait for your car to warm up in the mornings. It’s a waste of gas, and cars warm up faster while they’re driving anyway. Let it run for about thirty seconds and then start driving.