date21 December 2021

5 ways to improve your fleet fuel management  

With the recent increases in the price of petrol and diesel, fuel continues to be one of the biggest expenses within a fleet and that’s unlikely to change for a while. Therefore, it's key for business success that fleet managers continue to monitor fuel usage and look for ways to control fuel costs to the business.

Although fuel prices can’t be controlled, there are ways to improve fuel efficiency and to save money in the long term. Here are our top 5 ways to improve fleet fuel management.

  1.      Route optimisation  

It’s impossible for drivers to know the best route to take all the time, even if they’re familiar with the area because traffic, roadworks and new drop-off points can throw a route off course. Route optimisation can be a great help in planning the most effective route, cutting down on excessive mileage and, consequently, fuel. The software compiles the best route based on all fleet tasks and creates the route which maximises vehicle utilisation, the lowest mileage and still meets customer expectations.  

2.      Vehicle maintenance  

A well-maintained vehicle will always perform better than a neglected one, as well as helping to prevent avoidable breakdowns. Preventative maintenance and continuous maintenance checks should be completed to help keep the vehicle in top condition which will help maximise your fleet’s fuel consumption. This could include checking tyre pressure/tread, oil levels, wheel alignment and brakes, all of which are important to a vehicle’s fuel consumption. Unfortunately, the paperwork side of regular maintenance checks can be a chore, but with PODstar’s Vehicle Inspection App, it’s easy. Our software will increase compliance with drivers and regulations, save you money on costly out-of-the-blue repairs, and give you peace of mind.  

3.      Monitor driver behaviour  

Driver behaviour does play a part in fleet fuel management, and although there is little that management can physically do about their driver’s behaviour when they are on the road, opening lines of communication and making suggestions can be helpful. There are several driver practices that can be introduced to help reduce wasting fuel including:

  • ·         Not speeding. Even though drivers know they shouldn’t speed, some still will, and driving at excessive speeds will burn more fuel.
  • ·         Turning off the engine. Many drivers will leave their vehicle idling when on their delivery route but if they’re going to be out of the vehicle more than a minute or            two, the engine should instead be turned off.
  • ·         Use cruise control where possible. If the fleet vehicles are fitted with cruise control, the drivers should be encouraged to use it whenever possible.                                This will help to maintain a consistent and steady speed which helps to preserve fuel levels.

All of these behaviours and policies can be hard to track. That’s why here at PODstar, we offer vehicle tracking to ensure you have full visibility of your fleet and how your drivers are going about their deliveries compared to the route planning. This can help you see if they’re speeding, or deviating from their route without authorisation, costing the company time and fuel.  

4.      Fleet fuel card  

A great way to stay on top of fuel expenses is to use fuel cards within your fleet management. By giving each driver their own fuel card, it's easier to understand how much fuel is being used and allows for easy fuel consumption analysis between drivers, taking into account their route lengths. This also allows for historical trends to be calculated and can also help fleet managers understand if a vehicle has inefficient fuel usage compared to others in the fleet. All this helps reduce fuel wastage and enables the company to become fuel optimised.  

5.      Vehicle weight loss  

A simple way to improve fuel used within the fleet is to ensure the vehicles are as light as they can be. This could be through cleaning out rubbish, not carrying parcels that aren’t for that route or removing any snow/ice during the cold seasons. Even keeping the vehicles clean can help with fuel efficiency as dirt, oil and road salts can not only increase weight but also decrease the vehicle's aerodynamics! It’s a simple solution that can save fuel over a long period of time.  

Find out more If you’re looking for ways to improve our fleet fuel management and would like to know more about our PODstar vehicle tracking or vehicle inspection app, get in touch today. Our expert team is always happy to answer any questions you may have.