Having trouble knowing how to reduce fuel consumption in vehicles? Ever considered using different fuel management strategies to reduce fuel costs? Well, these questions would have popped in your mind umpteen times, especially if you’re in the trucking or supply chain business.
Undoubtedly, fuel spend remains the second-largest fleet operating expense for the trucking companies every year, with depreciation expense being the first. For every fleet manager, escalating fuel costs is a top-of-mind concern, and because of the same reason, they need to understand how they can reduce this expense.
It is impossible to predict or change the cost per gallon as the prices of crude oil are ever-changing. At the same time, there will always be certain operational minimums that your company has to uphold. Therefore, it is essential to realize the several factors that influence fleet fuel expenses are within your control and can be efficiently managed.
With LoadStop, an efficient Al and cloud-based transportation management software at your disposal, you can begin to evaluate the activities that highly influence fleet fuel consumption. Moreover, you can access comprehensive reporting and mileage information and address the day-to-day decisions to improve overall fuel spending.
Fuel Management Strategies That Work
Considering some of the most significant factors that fleet managers should consider to reduce fuel expense, we have discussed some of the best fuel management strategies recommended by experts in fleet fuel management. Let us look at the ways to reduce fuel cost and understand the best fuel management strategies that really work.
Get Cheaper Fuel
One of the best ways to reduce fuel costs would be getting cheaper fuel. If fleet managers manage to get cheaper fuel, they’d automatically see a decline in operating expenses. If you haven’t thought of how to reduce fuel costs, it is high time you do it now.
Here’s the best tip—you can use mobile fueling to save on gas prices. A cost-effective supplier can bring fuel directly to your fleet with mobile fueling, reducing unintended stops and unnecessary fuel-ups. This will also abridge expense tracking by dropping the number of different gas prices you will need to track through the rest of the year.
Proper Route Mapping
With proper route mapping of your fleet, you can cut back on your fuel costs. When you monitor the execution of routes, it becomes a bit easier to anticipate future events. As a result, you can make better fleet management decisions.
It’s essential to look for opportunities to reduce your fleet size or make your vehicles more efficient with proper route mapping. For better results, it is recommended to use LoadStop, an effective transportation management software, so that you can get access to detailed reporting and understand both your efficiencies and inefficiencies.
Check the Tire Pressure
One of the other essential fuel management strategies is to always check the tire pressure. As per the US Department of Energy, you can improve your gas mileage from 0.6% to 3% merely by properly inflating your tires.
The research conducted by the US Department of Energy also specified that under-inflated tires could tend to lower mileage by 0.2% for every 1 PSI drop in the average pressure of your tires. This indicates that you can save up to $0.01 per gallon by just maintaining proper tire pressure for your vehicles.
Keep Your Fleet Clean
It may sound really simple, but you need to keep your vehicles clean to know how to reduce fuel costs. Most of the time, oil, salt, dirt, and other types of impurities can add weight to a vehicle, especially large-sized vehicles, haulers, trailers, and heavy-duty trucks.
It is needless to say that unwashed vehicles are less efficient because they’re heavier in size and because the accumulation can cause friction and drag. Therefore, it is advised to look after the cleanliness of your fleet, especially during the winter season, when snow and ice cover the vehicles quickly.
Regularly Plan Vehicle Maintenance
Another helpful fuel management strategy that can help you reduce your fuel cost is regularly planning and scheduling vehicle maintenance. By planning timely vehicle maintenance, you can make sure your fleet always stays in top condition.
For example, even a simple thing such as wheel misalignment can decrease vehicle efficiency, requiring more fuel to run well on the road. And, providing proper vehicle maintenance at the right time can keep maintenance costs to a minimum.
Shift to Fuel-efficient Vehicles
If you have the option of upgrading your fleet’s vehicles, you should go for it. New vehicle models, especially fuel-efficient ones, have higher mile per gallon ratings than their preceding counterparts. It goes without saying that more miles per gallon mean less fuel consumption.
However, if you feel you cannot shift to the fuel-efficient models of your fleet’s vehicles at the moment, then don’t worry. Even by following regular replacement cycles, you can anticipate seeing noticeable improvement in both miles per gallon and costs per mile over some time.
Use Fleet Fuel Cards
Fleet managers can use fleet fuel cards to make fleet fuel management simpler and more manageable. With the help of a fleet fuel card, you can exercise more control over your employee spending as you can monitor all the fuel purchases.
Fleet managers can use a controlled fleet fuel card program to set limits around things such as:
- Which gas stations drivers stop by to get discounts
- How often do drivers fuel up their vehicles
- What times of the day fuel can be purchased
- How much fuel is pumped every visit
Fleet fuel cards also offer detailed data and reports, which you can use to limit excessive spending and prevent fraud of the fleet fuel card.
Check the Speed Limit
Observing the speed limit is a safety issue, and we already know that. But, did you also know that it can also have a massive impact on fuel economy? In fact, according to the US Department of Energy, as soon as the driver reaches 50mph, the gas mileage rapidly starts to decline.
Hence, it is vital to check the speed limit to reduce the costs of fuel for your vehicles.
Use Effective TMS
We cannot stress enough the importance of deploying transportation management software in your fleet business. Every other day, we see more and more fleets using the TMS to help record accurate, real-time data and automate data entry without any trouble.
In fact, LoadStop, the one-window smart TMS, can help you cut back on your operating expenses by providing you with detailed reports on driver performance, monitoring unintended routes or personal stopovers, and helping you schedule and plan efficient driver schedules.
LoadStop has integrations with leading fuel card providers to record all fuel transactions, ensuring better fuel management for the fleet managers. Hence, do not forget to invest in this effective TMS for your business.
We hope now you understand how fuel management strategies can help you reduce your fuel costs.
About the Author: Sara Naveed
Sara Naveed is a creative and digital content writer who uses her creative skills to develop and edit professional web content. Being a writer has always been her dream. She earnestly hopes people appreciate her writing—an asset she deeply covets. Using her 8+ years of working experience, she writes for trucking industry experts who are always looking for better technological solutions to their problems.