One of the chief reasons a lot of buyers choose a two-wheeler for their daily commute, apart from lower buying costs and the convenience of easy parking, is of course, lower running costs. But with petrol prices now well ahead of the Rs 100 mark in all cities across the country, getting the best efficiency possible from your bike has become vitally important. So here are a few tips and tricks you can follow to achieve the same.
Develop good throttle control
Many people think fuel efficiency is purely a function of engine size, and while engine size does play a role in overall mileage, how well you control the throttle plays a bigger role. It’s very easy even for a small capacity bike to return terrible mileage if you’re very heavy handed with the throttle. The general rule of thumb is to give gentler throttle inputs and gradually build up your speed. Large throttle inputs will see you get a drop in efficiency.
Look ahead and plan your lines
This might sound like strange advice, but building a better situational awareness of what traffic is ahead of you will help you plan better lines through it and mainly help in avoiding hard braking if something gets in your way. That way you’ll also avoid having to open the throttle hard to regain lost speed. It all comes down to being able to maintain your momentum to reduce the number of times you have to slow down and speed up again.
Plan your route
This might seem like a bit of a stretch, but planning to use a route for your daily commute that avoids traffic will actually help you get more mileage from your bike compared to your regular route, even if it’s a little longer. So if you can use a highway for your commute as opposed to a route through the heart of the city, you’ll end up saving fuel. Like we mentioned in the previous point. Having to constantly slow down and speed up again has a devastating effect on your efficiency. Also, if you can afford to commute during off-peak hours, it’ll actually be better.
Kill the engine at stop lights
No matter what your older advisors might have told you, there’s no set time that the signal needs to be red for it to warrant killing your engine. You should kill it as soon as you’re waiting for more than a few seconds. Modern fuel injected engines use very little fuel during restarts. So every second spent with your engine off at a signal, directly translates to fuel saved.
Check your tyre pressures regularly
Underinflated tyres increase your bike’s rolling resistance. Which means the engine has to work harder to maintain the same speed. And this has an adverse effect on your mileage. Of course, overinflation of your tyres has its own set of problems, mainly reduced grip from the tyres, which is especially dangerous on loose surfaces.
Good maintenance goes a long way
We can’t stress the importance of regular maintenance of your bike in order to get the best efficiency out of it. This means regular servicing, oil and filter changes, as well as cleaning injectors/carburettors. You might also consider getting your bike’s fuel tank cleaned out every couple of years in order to ensure that any latent debris doesn’t get caught in your fuel pump or carburettor. You also need to ensure that you’re using good quality fuel that is as clean as possible.
Just follow these simple steps and you’ll ensure that you’re squeezing every single kilometer out of every litre of that precious fuel you put in your bike.