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Parts + Service

Improve Your Truck’s Fuel Economy

Due to record high diesel prices, identifying ways to increase truck and fleet fuel economy and minimize fuel consumption is a priority. The following three sections on driver skills, idling and speeding and proper truck maintenance and equipment are major factors when it comes to conserving fuel.

Truck Driver Skills

Kenworth has a long-standing history of using technological advancements to improve fuel economy; however, spec’ing your truck with aerodynamics and fuel economy features will only have a major impact if you refine your fuel management driving skills and techniques.

According to the Technology and Maintenance Council (TMC), an experienced driver can be 35 percent more fuel efficient than an untrained driver. Increasing fuel efficiency is possible if a skilled driver:

  • Reduces speeds to reasonable levels
  • Uses restraint when accelerating from a stop
  • Uses cruise control when possible
  • Monitors road and weather conditions
  • Minimizes idling time

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suggests driver-training programs that work to improve fleet fuel economy by 5 percent could save over $1,200 in fuel costs per vehicle each year.

Idling & Speeding

The EPA estimates that a truck consumes up to 1.2 gallons of diesel fuel for each hour idling or an approximate 2,200 gallons of fuel per truck each year.

Understanding that driver comfort is essential, the no-idle Bergstrom NITE® system is an efficient way to keep your cab comfortable, no matter the temperature outside. Available for all leading makes, the NITE system eliminates the need for idling to keep the cab cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Consider the newly introduced, CARB-approved NITE Phoenix that features automatic temperature control for optimum comfort and can run for 8 to 10 hours.

The American Trucking Associations (ATA) also recommends reducing speeds, as traveling 75 mph can consume 27 percent more fuel than driving 65 mph. Reducing speeds will not only increase truck and fleet fuel economy, but also help reduce maintenance costs.

Proper Truck Maintenance and Equipment

As always, maintaining proper preventive maintenance practices and knowing when replacement is necessary will keep your truck on the road longer and improve fuel economy. Consult with your Kenworth service technician about the following truck components that may prevent your vehicle from sustaining desired fuel economy levels:

  • Air and fuel filters
  • Misaligned axles
  • Cracked, bent or damaged body components
  • Synthetic or semi-synthetic oils

For more information on fuel management and preventative maintenance, visit your preferred Kenworth dealer.

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