In France, the share of transport in greenhouse gas emissions is 29%. In other words, it is the most polluting sector even before energy consumption at home. Polluting 2,5 times more than heavy goods vehicles, private vehicles are the most affected by this phenomenon. At a time when the emphasis is on behavior that respects the environment, driving in an ecological manner has also become a major concern for everyone. Tires, an important component of driving safety, help reduce a vehicle's ecological footprint. Find out how better tires are key to greener driving.
The influence of tires on fuel consumption
Many people may not know it, but the condition of the tires is responsible for higher fuel consumption (they can influence 20% to 30%!). It is therefore essential to check the condition of your tires before hitting the road to reduce fuel consumption. This gesture is not only good for your wallet, but also for the planet.
The overconsumption caused by tires goes through several parameters:
The inflation or the good tire pressure
As tires are made of air, their inflation decreases as you ride. However, under-inflated tires are not only bad in terms of safety - they cause poor handling and the risk of bursting - they also cause a 4% increase in fuel consumption. It is therefore essential to monitor tire inflation on a regular basis.
Please note that tire inflation cannot be improvised. You must check the information on the sticker placed on the inside pillar of the front left door or in the logbook. Then over inflate the tires at 0,2 bar above the value indicated by the manufacturer.
Tire pressure checks are performed approximately every 1 kilometers or monthly. It is necessary think about changing your tires when they are in bad shape for optimize your safety and fuel consumption. Note that in winter, greater vigilance is required due to the weather. Snow, cold and sleet can help reduce tire pressure.
Just like under inflation, too high tire pressure can also pose a safety risk. Hence the importance of not making a mistake about the tire pressure.
If you experience abnormal vibrations while driving, or if your wheels are wearing out faster, it is very likely that your tires are out of balance. Balancing the tires is necessary after changing them, in order to distribute their weight evenly over their entire circumference.
The consequences of a poorly balanced wheel are numerous. Not only does it impact on driving comfort by causing more fatigue for the driver, but it also causes premature and abnormal tire wear as well asoverconsumption of fuel, which will increase your carbon footprint.
To limit the ecological footprint of a car, it is therefore essential to regularly check the balance of the tires. Beyond the obligation to perform this operation each time the tires are changed, it is also recommended to have the geometry or parallelism of the tires checked once a year or every 10 to 000 km.
There are several tire sizes suitable for different types of vehicles on the market. Note that there is a relationship between tire size and vehicle fuel consumption. Wide tires lead to excess fuel consumption due to the fact that the contact patch on the road is so wide. But the downside is the performance gain. Wider tires perform better, especially on the highway.
Conversely, small size tires can reduce fuel consumption by around 0,4l / 100 km. But beware, this gain can turn into a loss if the vehicle is fitted with tires of different sizes. Don't hesitate to ask your mechanic if it is possible to change the size of your tires to reduce your fuel consumption.
Tire rolling resistance
Rolling resistance refers to the energy the vehicle needs to keep the tires moving on a surface, or quite simply the energy consumed when the tires are in contact with the road. This value reaches around 20% in an average private car, you read correctly: 20% of the energy (therefore of the consumption) is lost at the level of the 4 tires! It is very important but it is the guarantee of comfort and safety!
It is a key factor in a car's fuel consumption. The higher the rolling resistance of the tires, the higher the fuel consumption. Several factors can increase the rolling resistance of tires, including tire underinflation or wear.
To overcome this problem, manufacturers today offer tires with low rolling resistance or economical tires. They are known to provide fuel savings of 4-6%. In addition, they also make it possible to reduce the rate of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere.
Since November 2012, motorists have had a simple way to compare the tires sold on the market. This is the European labeling. This sets up a simple pictogram going from the letter A to the letter G according to three criteria:
- fuel consumption,
- wet grip,
- the noise emitted while driving.
For all these criteria, Class A tires are considered the best, in other words the best in terms of fuel consumption, wet grip and noise pollution. To minimize fuel consumption, therefore, preference should be given to class A tires.
A ecological driving to reduce fuel consumption
Regularly calculating fuel consumption is not enough to drive economically. As soon as we talk about ways to reduce fuel consumption, we also need to talk about concept of ecological driving.
A few simple techniques allow the driver to reduce his impact on fuel consumption, and therefore on the environment. Among them, we can cite the anticipation of braking by adopting a constant driving speed. Note that regular acceleration and braking increase fuel consumption significantly. It is therefore necessary to maintain a constant speed. Anticipation of braking also involves planning maneuvers in advance, by controlling the road and those around you.
Finally, other methods are also involved in la reduction of the ecological impact of driving. Among them is the weight reduction of the vehicle. Any additional weight increases a vehicle's fuel consumption because it requires more energy.
In addition, it is necessary to moderate the use of comfort equipment, such as air conditioning or heating, which tends to increase fuel consumption.