It’s no secret that gas prices have been on the rise for the last several years, but they’ve been at an all-time high recently, and people are growing concerned. During Thanksgiving, gas prices reached their highest point since 2012, according to CNN. The average cost for a regular gallon of gasoline was $3.40, 62% above the same point last year and 32% higher than 2019, before the pandemic. Of course, this has a catastrophic effect on the fleet industry, which relies almost entirely on gasoline to keep operations running smoothly. Of course, there’s nothing that fleets can do to lower the price at the pump, so instead they have to try and reduce the amount of gas they use. This article will discuss how fleets can reduce their fuel use.
Take Advantage of Fleet Management Software
Fleet management software is a technology that allows you to monitor all aspects of fleet management. It helps you track all kinds of driver behavior, vehicle needs, and safety initiatives, so you can rest assured that your fleet is running at maximum efficiency at all times. You can use fleet management software in various ways to ensure that your fleet is getting the best out of its gas mileage. Let’s break down some of the ways you can do so.
Speeding is just one of the many behaviors you can track with fleet management software, and there are many reasons your drivers shouldn't be speeding. Not only does it put them in great danger, but it also wastes a significant amount of fuel. Every five miles that your drivers travel over 50 miles per hour, you’re paying an additional $0.20 per gallon. If you’re trying to save on gas, speeding is not the way to do so. But you can’t be in the passenger seat with your drivers. That’s why you have to set strict speeding policies among your fleet and ensure you communicate these policies clearly to your drivers. Once these policies are established, you can enforce them using technology like Azuga Speedsafe to track your drivers’ speed.
Speeding isn’t the only driver behavior you have to look out for when you want to save fuel. Idling is something else that wastes a significant amount of fuel if you’re not careful—idling a truck wastes about 0.8 gallons of fuel per hour. While this may not seem like a lot at first, you must consider how much your drivers may idle throughout the day. They may idle while taking a nap, while eating their lunch, while taking their breaks, or while waiting between jobs. This time can add up and eat up your bottom line. Luckily, just like speeding, you can take steps to reduce idling. Once you communicate a clear idling policy with your drivers, you can track their behavior with telematics. Not only will telematics tell you how much your vehicles are idling, but it will tell you how much fuel you’re wasting by doing so.
Use Route Planning Software
You’d be surprised at how much fuel you can save by using route planning software. Route planning software is a technology that uses algorithms, machine learning, historical data, and telematics to get drivers to their destinations in the most fuel-efficient way possible. It can include every stop your fleet needs and consider places where you may run into traffic, construction zones, or other delays that hinder your fleet’s progress. Even better, it ensures that you’re getting the most use out of your vehicles, using just the right amount to get the job done, and not wasting any resources. This allows to save money and even grow your business if you want to. Route planning software can cut down your fuel use so that your gas spending can stay low even if prices remain at this extreme high.
Keep Vehicles Well Maintained
It makes perfect sense that vehicles running at their top performance will be more fuel-efficient. Vehicles with malfunctioning parts have to work harder to keep moving, which means that your fuel simply goes to waste. One aspect you have to pay particular attention to when you’re concerned about fuel economy is your vehicle’s tires. Tires that aren’t properly inflated or aligned put more strain on your vehicle, meaning more fuel waste to keep it moving. It’s a common problem that vehicles face, which is unfortunate because it is such an easy fix.
Promote Safe Driving Behavior
We went over a few different ways that driving behavior leads to fuel waste. There are a lot of different driving behaviors that lead to fuel waste in your fleet. Of course, all fleets try to promote good driving habits to keep drivers safe and prevent accidents, but it’s also critical to avoid these behaviors because they waste fuel. Behaviors such as slamming on the brakes or hitting the accelerator are big fuel-wasters that also put your fleet at risk. As with the other driving behaviors that we mentioned during this article, these behaviors can be tracked with telematics through your fleet management software to prevent them from happening and save your business money on fuel.
Start Saving Money on Gas Today
With gas prices breaking records, you need to do all you can to save money on fuel. If you follow the steps outlined in this article, you’re sure to make a huge dent in your fuel bill, and it’s sure to help your business’s bottom line. Luckily, Azuga offers top-of-the-line fleet management software that enables you to track your drivers’ behavior, vehicle maintenance and keep your drivers safe on the road so you can limit their fuel use. You can try a demo of our fleet management solution online.