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MSE's 2011 Petrol/Diesel Cost Diet Challenge: Put your money where your pedal is!

edited 11 January 2011 at 8:29PM in Motoring
168 replies 75.4K views


  • B00stB00st Forumite
    78 Posts
    JennyP wrote: »
    I passed that actual garage the night before and nearly filled up there!
    I reckon it'll take me 18 months to recoup the money I spent on the Citroen in terms of fuel savings, but I also save on tax and insurance too and as the car is 5 years younger than my Merc and has done only 20,000 as opposed to 120,000 I'm hoping maintenance costs will also be lower. That said, the Merc never needed more than a service. It never broke down or anything.

    Your C3 is also going to depreciate rather heavily as well, have you factored that into the running costs?
  • JennyPJennyP Forumite
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    All cars depreciate though don't they? I know some depreciate less than others - Mercs and Lexus ??? - but I don't want to shell out for either of those.
    The Merc cost me £1000 a year in depreciation. I'm hoping to keep the Citroen for 6 years and since I paid less than £6000 for it, that'll be about the same, assuming it's worth absolutely nothing at the end of that time!
    It's a diesel convertible - there were only 6 C3 diesel convertibles for sale on autotrader when I looked so I'm hoping rarity value might make it easier to sell on at a reasonable price. If I ever want to.... right now, it's the honeymoon period and I can't imagine wanting another car!
  • For diesel drivers, I strongly recommend using an additive called Envirox. It's used by Stagecoach on their buses - my dad and I are both getting improved fuel economy of around 7-8% (I have a VW Golf, he drives a Peugeot 406). If you don't drive sensibly and maintain your car well it's not going to help you particularly, but if you do, it's well worth it.
  • burge23burge23 Forumite
    74 Posts
    Can I also suggest getting tyres checked properly occasionally following my mistake! My diesel C3 was averaging about 53mpg for mostly town driving with one longer motorway run per month to visit my dad. Following it's service last November this dramatically dropped to about 44mpg. I put this down to the garage maybe using cheaper oil, my driving etc although my driving hadn't changed. Two weeks ago I noticed for the second time running that one tyre had deflated more than the others. On checking I saw a metallic glint. Having headed off to the tyre shop to have it checked I discovered 2 screws in the tyre. :eek: Thankfully they were far enough apart for a £17 repair (cheap compared to a new tyre). The screws had clearly worked loose enough to be causing a noticeable slow puncture Instantly my fuel consumption sky rocketed and is now sitting at a happy 54.3mpg. :D

    Always worth checking out as it's cost me a fair bit in the last 4 months but it's looking up now! :j
  • edited 20 May 2011 at 5:39PM
    JDPowerJDPower Forumite
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    edited 20 May 2011 at 5:39PM
    Personally I've found accelerating quickly up to speed gives better fuel consumption than gentle acceleration. There's some good tips here too: (one or two of the techniques suggested here are dangerous, eg drafting, forced auto stop, so use your common sense on which tips you use)
  • davidjwestdavidjwest Forumite
    756 Posts
    For diesel drivers, I strongly recommend using an additive called Envirox. It's used by Stagecoach on their buses - my dad and I are both getting improved fuel economy of around 7-8% (I have a VW Golf, he drives a Peugeot 406). If you don't drive sensibly and maintain your car well it's not going to help you particularly, but if you do, it's well worth it.

    I did try the Miller's additive a few months ago and the results seemed to show a slight improvement in MPG but it was hard to quantify due to all the variables involved. I'd estimate it gave me around 3-4% extra MPG which meant that taking into account the cost of the additive it was barely worth using.

    I may give this one a go and see if there's any further improvement, thanks for the info.

    Your improved MPG may be due to the weather getting warmer, at least in part.

    Will try it and report back.
  • Its very difficult to accurately measure fuel savings as so many different factors affect it such as

    Driving style
    Load the vehicle is carrying,number of passengers etc
    Driving conditions
    Tyre pressure and condition of tyres
    Atmospheric conditions
    Composition of fuel
    Frequency and severity of gradients

    To carry out an accurate test all these factors need to be maintained as constant so that the only variable which changes is the one that you wish to measure the effect of.

    I did precisely that when I used EcoSmart Oil Power additive,here are the results below.



    To attempt to minimise any variables appertaining to the exercise in order to compare engine fuel consumption before and after treatment with EcoSmart Oil Power
    Measurement of fuel used
    Measurement of distance covered
    Quality of fuel used
    Traffic conditions and route,ie urban,nonurban
    Driving style
    Atmospheric conditions
    To address all of the above as far as possible the following methodology was adopted.
    A 2002 Alfa Romeo 1.6 litre petrol engine vehicle had its tank filled as far as possible with fuel and was then driven at as close to a constant 60 mph as traffic conditions would allow around two full circuits of the M60 motorway starting and finishing at Stockport where it was originally fuelled,a distance of 70.70 miles
    It then had its fuel tank filled as before at the same pump at the same filling station as before and the amount of fuel used and distance travelled were noted.
    EcoSmart Oil Power was then administered to the engine oil.
    The vehicle was then driven around exactly the same route at the same speed by the same driver.
    The traffic conditions and weather were the same for both trips.
    On completion of the second trip the vehicle was refuelled again in exactly the same way and the same information recorded.
    The results are as below

    Dist (m) Fuel used(L) MPL MPG Change
    Before treatment 70.70 8.47 8.35 38.08

    After treatment 70.70 6.30 11.22 51.16 + 34.34%
    We consider the methodology used to minimise any variables is sound and therefore the results above accurately reflect the actual fuel consumption performance
  • kelv.rkelv.r Forumite
    2 Posts
    Scotty1.7 wrote: »
    The option of moving into the town- would equal higher costs of living, thus negating the reason for moving. That is a double edged sorwd so a argument on that could run for many decades

    I've not seen the prices in europe, so apologies if that was wrong but going off what I have read regarding the people going across channel to fill up the last few eyars I took that to be the case.

    The Goverment can make up the differnce by stopping helping other nations out of there issues, cutting imergration, stopping benefits and getting those people who are to lazy to work, to work fixing the roads. Just so you all understand that is those who are not working when they should eb a claiming fraudulantly- Not those who are unable to work for any other reasons.

    I agree with the uninsured drivers comment- we shouldn't pay for them. It should be a instant 6 month custodial sentence, with a no good behaviour clause.

    I see your point with the 2nd car, but I don't agree that they need such large cars. Does a family with 1-2 children need a massive people carrier? Why have 1 massive car ( which lets be honest in most case, not all but most is taken by whoever goes early to work) and small one. 2 small cars Polo Bluemotion/Toyota IQ etc woudl suffice for those needs- And they are cheap to run and cheap to tax(Free in the case of the 2 examples given)

    all the comments strike a cord i work 12 hour day night shifts my wife is self employed my eldest son is in the army my youngest just finished his A levels while working 4- 5 X 8 hr shifts at Mc Donalds. All of us have cars as we all travel many miles to our places of work. just came back from france for a week and the cost of living is horrendous.No easy straight forward answer but yes the people in power are liars and con merchants. They talk like salespoeple but there product is crap . They should do instead of talk. I am sick to the back teeth of paying for others. uncontrolled imegration high taxs to subsidise wasters theives spongers pig troughing government officials and theiving twisting dodgy bankers. Ooooow I do feel better now. seversl years ago I had to bring up two children 2 and 4 years respectively as a single man with very little help particularly from the state . so I have little sypathy for those who do not contribute but there are always exceptions l grant you. NOW BACK TO THE POINT SMALLER CARS LESS TRAVELLING AND MORE CAR SHARING.WAIT PATIENTLY FOR A CLEVER SCIENTIST TO SPLIT WATER INTO HYDROGEN AND OXYEGEN CHEAPLY. THEN UP YOURS ARAB STATES.
  • motorguymotorguy Forumite
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    mintlpg wrote: »
    Saving on Petrol and diesel costs is on everyone mind. At mintLPG we have a solution -- Convert to LPG save 40% of you petrol bill and help the environment. Running your car on LPG seems to be a best kept secret!! On an average use car 100% return on capital is achievable!! We have even converted Hybrid cars so that the equivalent of over 100mpg is achieved!
    Checkout the mintLPG website

    Reported as SPAM
  • edited 28 August 2011 at 5:34PM
    motorguymotorguy Forumite
    22.2K Posts
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    edited 28 August 2011 at 5:34PM
    I've moved from spending £500 a month on diesel and £1500 a year on home heating oil to ZERO (oil based) fuel costs (i dont have a car as such and now work from home) and we use wood pellets / solar panels in our new house.
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