Fuel costs eat up many owner operators’ funds. If you’re always out on the road, it makes sense that you’re going to incur quite a lot of fuel costs. However, there are tips that you can use to reduce the costs of your fuel. Follow a few simple steps and you will be able to see how much of an impact you can make on your total funds spent on fuel.
Don’t Be Speedy
It can be tempting, especially when you’re under a deadline, to try to get to your destination as quickly as possible. However, speeding is rarely the answer. As a matter of fact, there are numerous studies that show that speeding can actually raise fuel consumption. The best way to make the most out of your fuel is to reduce your overall average speed.
There are many drivers that idle in order to power climate control in their trucks or in order to power their accessories at night. However, this is a costly thing to do. Idling uses up about a gallon of fuel every hour which can become $120 in a single week if you use your truck to idle eight hours in a day. The smartest thing that you can do for your weekly spending is to purchase an auxiliary power unit. It may have a higher cost initially than simply idling but it will save you much more in the long run.
Choose the Right Fueling Station
The right fueling station can make a big difference in overall fuel costs. Some truckers wait until the last possible moment to fuel up and they are subject to paying whatever price for fuel that they come across. However, there is something to be said about strategically planning your stops. After all, if you can look up the price of gas at different fuel stops, you can plan to stop at the one that is most economical.
If you absolutely must stop, try to get just enough fuel to cover the cost of traveling from that station to the cheaper one. From the cheaper one, fuel up completely. Then make note of that station so you can plan all future trips in that area with the intent to stop at that station.
Be Selective About Your Fuel
Your trips will likely take you through rural areas where rest stops may be few and far between. This means that you may be forced to go to a fueling station that is not a truck stop. If that is the case, you have to be careful that the fuel that you purchase is ultra-low-sulfur diesel. Before you fuel up, make sure to check the labeling. If you’re able to make it to another station, do so.
The other type of fuel that you have to watch out for is biofuel. This is because biofuel tends to be more expensive and it produces lower fuel mileage. The level of biofuel allowed under your warranty varies so be sure to look up what it is for your vehicle. Additionally, be sure that you only use the fuels that are approved for your truck.
Opt for Larger Dual Tanks
Another thing that you can do to maximize your fuel stops is to purchase a large dual tank. This is ideal because if you reach a truck stop that has fuel for cheap, you can fuel up as much as possible and have it ready for later. This is not only effective at helping you keep your fuel costs down, but it is also helpful in keeping you on the road with fewer pit stops.
Don’t Forget Your Truck Maintenance
Truck maintenance always matters. It can be very discouraging to be in the middle of a trip and discover that there is a major repair that needs to be done in order for you to continue. These types of emergency repairs can be wildly expensive and you will frequently be at the mercy of whatever repair company is nearest to you.
The best way to avoid this is to make sure that you do a routine check before every trip and after every trip. While this may seem tedious, you will find yourself catching things that you would not have caught otherwise. If you are able to do minor maintenance instead of a major repair, you will save yourself a lot of money and you will avoid having a faulty engine eat up your fuel.
Upgrade Your Equipment
There are some things that you can purchase that will reduce your fuel costs in the long run. They will cost you more upfront, but they can be very helpful over time. The first of these is a low-rolling-resistance tire. These types of tires will have a more durable tread at shallower depths which means that it will be more effective after it is no longer brand new.
Besides this, you can also invest in aluminum wheels. Why invest in something that is so much more costly? This is because these types of wheels create a drastic reduction in the weight of the vehicle. Reducing weight means that it takes less power to move the truck forward which ultimately results in lower fuel costs.
One final thing that you can do is to purchase trailer side skirts. The manufacturers of these devices say that they can boost fuel economy by over 5%. They cost nearly $3000 per trailer but they will pay for themselves over time.
Trust One of the Top Owner Operator Trucking Companies
Real Truckers is one of the best owner operator trucking companies and we take that responsibility very seriously. We know that truckers need support in order to thrive. That means that we work to serve every aspect of a trucker’s job. Do you need help finding your next load? We can give you that help. Do you need 24/7 assistance? You can count on us. We even help you to reduce fuel costs by providing fuel cards with discounts. If you are ready to join our network of incredible owner operators, do not hesitate to apply online today.