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TIPS TO DEAL WITH THE SKYROCKETING COST OF FUEL Ben Shew, Executive Director Office of School Transportation WV Department of Education.

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Presentation on theme: "TIPS TO DEAL WITH THE SKYROCKETING COST OF FUEL Ben Shew, Executive Director Office of School Transportation WV Department of Education."— Presentation transcript:

1 TIPS TO DEAL WITH THE SKYROCKETING COST OF FUEL Ben Shew, Executive Director Office of School Transportation WV Department of Education

2 Driver Behavior Conservation Methods Driver behavior can save up to 30% on fuel economy No Idling policy and state code requirements reduces fuel costs – By at least $150 per bus annually ($400,000 statewide). – A typical school bus uses a half-gallon of fuel per hour idling. – Idling for an hour is the equivalent of driving 75 miles in terms of fuel consumption and engine wear.

3 HOW MUCH CAN I SAVE BY NOT IDLING MY SCHOOL BUS ENGINE? 1 hour of idling a bus engine wastes 1/2 a gallon of diesel fuel U.S. average diesel cost is $4.10/gallon as of 04/25/2011 ONE-HALF HOUR Less Idling Per Day $avings ($/year) Savings Fleet Size: 110204080100 $185$1,845$3,690$7,380$14,760$18,450 (Gallons Diesel Fuel/Year) Savings 454509001,8003,6004,500 ONE HOUR Less Idling Per Day $avings($/year) Savings Fleet Size: 110204080100 $369$3,690$7,380$14,760$29,520$36,900 (Gallons Diesel Fuel/Year) Savings 909001,8003,6007,2009,000 WV Depart. of Environmental Protection - Division of Air Quality

4 Anti-Idling State Code WEST VIRGINIA CODE §17C-13A-2. Restrictions on idling. No driver or owner of a diesel-powered motor vehicle with a gross vehicle weight of ten thousand one pounds or more engaged in commerce may cause, and no owner or operator of the location where the vehicle loads, unloads or parks, may allow the engine of the vehicle to idle for more than fifteen minutes in any continuous sixty-minute period, except as provided under section three of this article. Exception When a bus or school bus must idle to provide heating or air conditioning when nondriver passengers are onboard. For the purposes of this exemption, the bus or school bus may idle for no more than a total of fifteen minutes in a continuous sixty- minute period, except when idling is necessary to maintain a safe temperature for bus passengers.

5 Methods Select the right gear. –Allison automatic transmissions, for several years, have been providing the ability, by a button or switch, to operate the transmission in a fuel efficient mode. All school buses should be operated in this mode. This can save between 3 and 5 percent. –All transmissions should be operated by changing up through the gears and into top gear as soon as possible without accelerating harder than necessary. –Driving in a gear lower than you need wastes fuel; so does letting the engine labor in top gear on hills and corners.

6 Driver Behavior Conservation Methods Avoid “jackrabbit starts." When stopped or parked, drivers should accelerate smoothly, allowing the engine and transmission to perform optimally. "Jack-rabbit" starts and hard braking can increase fuel consumption by as much as 40%. Tests show that "jackrabbit" starts and hard braking reduces travel time by only four percent, while toxic emissions were more than five times higher. The proper way is to accelerate slowly and smoothly, then get into high gear as quickly as possible. In city driving, nearly 50% of the energy needed to power your car goes to acceleration. Plug in crank case heaters when temperature requires. can reduce winter fuel consumption by as much as 10%. Use the cruise control. – On long stretches of highway driving, cruise control can save fuel by helping your vehicle maintain a steady speed.

7 Driver Behavior Conservation Methods Start a program similar to a Washington County, Maryland program that has been successful in saving school bus fuel and bringing down transportation costs incurred by its fleet of 200 buses. Driver training and motivation are at the heart of the program. The drivers are taught five fuel saving techniques: cut unnecessary idling, drive “5 Under” the speed limit, accelerate and brake gently, keep an eye on traffic ahead, and shift at lower speeds. The motivational system includes dividing drivers and buses into competing groups, issuing monthly "report cards" showing mileage and fuel economy, and charting each driver's status in the school so students can support their drivers. The entire community is involved through publicity campaigns featuring details of the program and of savings to the community. The driver program had very low costs, showed a 6.8 percent improvement in fuel savings, and brought good "press" for the school system.

8 Driver Behavior Conservation Methods The WV Department of Education is requesting that all counties adopt a "five below" policy. Keeping operating speeds five miles per hour below the posted speed limit can save fuel and will not substantially lengthen trip time. It is estimated that adopting the “five below” policy will reduce fuel consumption by 400,000 gallons annually. This will save approximately $2,000,000 per year. On average, every one mph increase over 50 mph reduces your fuel mileage by.1 miles per gallon. Increasing your highway cruising speed from 55mph to 70mph can raise fuel consumption as much as 15%. You can improve your gas mileage 10 - 15% by driving at 55mph rather than 65mph.

9 Conservation Methods Check tire pressure daily for safety and fuel conservation 20% reduction in tire pressure equals a 3% loss of fuel economy. Always use your own tire gauge for consistent results. On average, tires lose about 5% of their pressure per month and 5% for every 10 degree drop in temperature.

10 Conservation Methods Fuel efficient tires – Helps decrease fuel consumption by 8% in comparison with a combination of standard production tires – The fuel efficient tire has a 26/32" tread depth which helps reduce the tire’s rolling resistance. This shallower tread depth could potentially decrease the tire’s original tread life and slightly increase the cost per mile. However, the fuel savings gains should more than make up for this loss. – Wear faster than standard tires. – Research shows that the tread contributes to over half of the rolling resistance. Use low-profile tires

11 Conservation Methods Wheel Alignment If any of the wheels are not properly aligned the total drag on the vehicle increases. There is greater “scrub” of the tires against the road surface and, potentially, greater aerodynamic drag when the vehicle is not tracking parallel to the direction of travel. This can reduce fuel economy by 0.6 percent

12 Conservation Methods Check oil levels and change fuel and air filters as necessary. Improper oil levels can decrease fuel economy by 2 percent. Restrictions created by clogged filters require the engine to work harder and consume more fuel. Poor combustion not only wastes fuel and creates smoke; it coats cylinder walls with fuel that washes protective oil from sealant rings creating more wear. Left unchecked it could mean a new bus engine. The air filter is an inexpensive, simple-to-install part that costs $30 for buses. Better combustion yields fuel savings and power. Air filters: Dirty air filters can also cause your engine to run at less than peak efficiency. Clogged filters can cause up to a 10% increase in fuel consumption.

13 Conservation Methods Review I. E. P. – what is being asked to do (pool trips, etc.) Drivers should not be passing each other going to other side of county to start their runs. Combine bus stops Ex-Curricular trips – review all trips Vehicle capacity – review to assure proper loading Consolidate trips where possible

14 Conservation Methods Oil: Using the correct viscosity oil is important because higher viscosity oils have greater resistance to the moving parts of the engine, and therefore use more gas. Clean oil also contributes to better gas mileage. It is usually recommended that engine oil be changed every five thousand miles. Oxygen Sensors: An exhaustive effort ignoring your oxygen sensor is an economic double-whammy.

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