With the recent rise in gas prices, small businesses need to rethink their approach to fuel costs. For hazmat distribution and service fleets, this means reducing expenses with fuel cards, streamlining routes with GPS location services and improving vehicle maintenance. Leaving a car idling can waste up to a gallon of fuel every hour, so be sure drivers don’t do it. Encouraging safe driving habits like obeying speed limits can improve gas mileage by reducing drag. Fuel costs are one of the most important expenses fleets must control, including trucking firms, carriers, maintenance shops, etc. It may be more difficult for these companies to run efficiently the more expensive gas and diesel become. There are various strategies to save fuel expenditures for your company, regardless of the sector you operate in or the kind of vehicles you drive.
Switch to Diesel Vehicles
Diesel vehicles use compression instead of spark plugs to ignite the fuel/air mixture. It makes them more efficient and more durable than gasoline engines. It is why many companies choose to invest in fleets of diesel trucks if they can afford it. Another benefit of diesel engines is their lower fire hazard than gasoline vehicles. Diesel fuel has a higher flash point, meaning it takes longer for the motor to burn in an accident or explosion. Using telematics to curb driver behavior and reduce fuel waste is a great way to cut costs. For example, a fleet manager may set a goal for drivers to stop idling their trucks for two or three hours daily. It will save your company money in fuel and wear and tear. Fleet management tools and having trucking fuel cards can also help you save money at the pump and elsewhere, from telematics and fuel cards to driver coaching.
Another way to reduce fuel costs is to optimize your routes. You can do this by using mapping software and ensuring that all paths are the most efficient for your drivers. It will also help to prevent fuel evaporation when fleet vehicles are parked in the sun. Finally, implement a clear policy that charges back employees for personal use of company vehicles and fuel cards. It will prevent a large percentage of your fuel costs from being wasted. Finally, you can make wise purchase decisions by periodically comparing diesel and gasoline prices.
Reduce Idling Time
Every hour a vehicle sits idle, it burns one gallon of fuel. It wastes money and decreases your company’s operating efficiency. Idling also increases maintenance costs and shortens engine life. In addition, idling produces fumes that can harm the health of drivers and people who are nearby. The first step in reducing fleet idling is to educate your drivers on how to avoid unnecessary engine use. Many simple behavioral adjustments can make a big difference in overall fleet idling. Idling trucks are a major source of air pollution and contribute to climate change.
Additionally, idling trucks emit harmful fumes that can cause asthma and other respiratory diseases in people nearby. In addition, these fumes can make drivers irritable and uncomfortable. The good news is that reducing idle time can be easy and affordable for fleet managers with the right technology. Using telematics to monitor vehicle diagnostics and track idling is an effective tool to help reduce your company’s fuel costs. By establishing geofences around common idling areas, fleets can receive an alert when a vehicle exceeds a set amount of idling time or enters or exits the room. It allows managers to address the issue immediately and create an on-the-spot incentive for drivers to drive more efficiently.
Businesses that require drivers to travel to multiple locations every day, such as delivery companies, waste removal and recycling services, pest control and integrated pest management, grocery stores, and even medical practices, can benefit greatly from implementing route optimization. Whether it is for dispatching to each location most cost-effectively, reducing turnaround time for customers by optimizing first-mile operations, or simply improving overall productivity by scheduling more orders or service calls into one day, companies that utilize routing software can dramatically reduce fuel costs without compromising the quality of their service or breaking any regulations.
One of the most obvious benefits of utilizing route optimization is how much it cuts down on idling time. By automatically routing around congested traffic and avoiding unnecessary back-tracking, drivers can save gallons of fuel per hour. Those savings can add up quickly when calculating the cost of idling for an entire fleet. A routing solution will help improve efficiency and reduce driving distances for all your routes. It will also eliminate wasted time spent in the car retracing steps or waiting for an appointment, and instead, ensure your drivers can maximize their productivity at each stop on their route. The more stops they can complete in a day, the more their hourly wages will be and the more profit they will make for your business.