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Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Go for green rubber

For many drivers, tyres are simply the black round things that keep their car from belly-flopping on the road. But the tyres you choose can have a huge impact on your pocket.

Tyres might all look the same but they have up to 4,000 components within, so can differ wildly. A report by synthetic rubber maker Lanxess suggests fitting rubber with a low rolling resistance is the quickest way for drivers to save money on fuel. It claims carbon savings per pound are 35 per cent greater than for an engine fitted with a stop-start system and 62 per cent greater than on a hybrid.

According to tests by consumer organisation Which?, eco tyres can save six per cent on fuel. Lanxess estimates that figure at seven per cent. This might sound like a meagre amount, but assuming you average 12,000 miles a year in a 35mpg car it will reduce your fuel bill by about £140 a year.

Of course eco tyres don’t save you money by accident. They’ll have undergone more research and be made from more complex compounds of materials which have to be justified by a higher price.

However, even if the price premium is £30 per corner they will more than pay for themselves in year one, then in year two the savings will begin.

“It is amazing that so many people are spending tens of thousands on new low-emission vehicles when comparable benefits can be achieved by greener tyres,” Kim O’Connor, managing director for Lanxess UK, said. “If more people understood that these tyres could reduce fuel consumption and cut CO2 emissions by up to 1kg every 60 miles, I think there would be a rapid shift in motorists’ buying behaviour.”

You can instantly see how efficient new tyres are now thanks to the EU tyre labelling that came into force last November. Alternatively, stick with your existing tyres and inflate them correctly. You’ll be in the minority if you do. Various research I’ve seen suggests anywhere between 75 and 95 per cent of the cars on the road have at least one incorrectly inflated tyre.

The effect of this is two-fold. Having tyres that are 15psi below their recommended pressure can increase fuel consumption by three per cent. It can also cause the tyre to wear out more quickly and substantially increase stopping distances.

Even if you don’t invest in a set of premium eco tyres, just giving your existing rubber a bit of TLC could start saving you cash.

Source: telegraph.co.uk

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