Auto, Yachts, Jets: Tips for Keeping Your Car Green

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Cars are notorious for having a tremendously harsh effect on the environment, but through basic maintenance and upkeep, there are several ways one can equip and maintain a vehicle to ensure it leaves a smaller carbon footprint.

Get a Checkup and Tune-up

Bringing the car in to a mechanic or other service provider for regular maintenance is the surest way to keep things running smoothly and is, therefore, one of the best tips for keeping your car green. Fluids are a car’s lifeblood, so keep the oil, transmission, brake, differential, and washer fluids clean and topped off, and replace them when they run out or become dirty.

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Tires are also a key element in keeping cars safe and efficient. Buy eco-friendly tires that offer greater traction and decrease rolling resistance. Ensure they’re always kept at the proper PSI, adjusting them according to the outside temperature. Your tires’ PSI should be lower in summer and higher in winter.

Drive Light

The more weight a car carries, the more effort and gas it needs to expend to get where it’s going. Do a survey of what the car is hauling and decide what’s a necessity and what can be ditched. Aside from long-distance trips, rooftop racks are useless.

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Detach the rack and leave it in the garage until you need it. Spare tires and roadside emergency kits are a necessity, but anything in the trunk beyond those two things is likely nonessential. Give the car a break and lighten its load.

Driving Needs

One’s driving habits have a huge impact on a car’s emissions and wear and tear. Beyond the obvious suggestions of not gunning the engine, not racing from place to place, not slamming on the brakes, and taking public transport whenever you can, there are techniques one can adopt to be a green driver, no matter how long they’ve been driving.

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Hypermiling involves making the best and most economical use of the fuel you have. In summary (though there are many facets of hypermiling), preplan errands and trips to reduce the number of stops and time on the road. Track fuel use through receipts and note mileage and the number of miles per gallon. Avoid idling, leave early to avoid traffic, and time stops for gas, taking rush hour and other challenges into consideration.

Keep It Clean

A clean car doesn’t just look good—it drives better as well. Studies have shown that regular cleanings can cut down on wind resistance and keep moving parts free of grit and grime that can impede performance.

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Keeping your car clean is one of the better tips for keeping your car green, but consider where all that grit, grime, and other gunk goes when you wash it away, not to mention the amount of water used while cleaning. Wash the car on the grass and try to keep the runoff from re-entering the ecosystem. It’s not a perfect system, but in some small way, it helps.

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