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Fuel savings: the importance of tires

The fuel efficiency of a vehicle depends on multiple factors, and one of the most important is the rolling resistance of the tires. Rolling resistance refers to the energy that a vehicle needs to keep its tires moving at a constant speed. The higher the rolling resistance, the greater the fuel consumption.

Therefore, at Fagor, we want to share some of the most important aspects of effective fleet management, focusing on tires and their impact on fuel savings.

How tires save fuel

As mentioned, tire rolling resistance directly impacts the vehicle, with higher resistance leading to increased fuel consumption.

Tires designed to reduce rolling resistance help improve fuel efficiency. These tires are made with special compounds and feature an optimized tread design to minimize friction with the road surface. For this reason, choosing the right tire is very important. Analyzing its design will be crucial for making the correct choice based on the needs of our vehicle fleet.

In addition, maintaining the proper tire pressure is crucial to ensure they operate efficiently. Tires with low pressure increase rolling resistance, resulting in higher fuel consumption and posing greater risks in driving.

Mechanic changing tires in a car service

Types of tires

We have mentioned that there are different types of tires, and manufacturers have been introducing various tire models to the market for several years now. The goal is to achieve a proper balance between safety, optimized design, and cost savings for the user.

Within the different types of tires, we can find:

  • Low Rolling Resistance Tires

These tires are specifically designed to reduce friction with the road, which helps improve fuel efficiency. They use special compounds in the tread and have designs that minimize tire deformation while driving. Although they may be more expensive initially, the fuel savings over time can offset the additional cost.

  • All-Terrain Tires

While all-terrain tires are ideal for difficult and varied driving conditions, they are not the most fuel-efficient. Their robust design and more aggressive tread increase rolling resistance. However, for vehicles that require off-road capabilities, these tires are necessary, and their impact on fuel consumption is an acceptable trade-off.

  • High Performance Tires

Designed to provide superior handling and better traction at high speeds, these tires can increase fuel consumption due to their higher rolling resistance. They are manufactured to optimize grip and performance, which can result in increased fuel consumption.

  • Winter Tires

Winter tires are designed to offer excellent performance in cold and snowy conditions. They have higher rolling resistance compared to summer or all-season tires, which can increase fuel consumption. However, in severe winter conditions, their use is essential for safety and traction. In countries like Germany, it is mandatory for all drivers, both professional and private, to use this type of tire during the winter months.

Choosing the best tire

We have observed the existence of different types of tires, but the correct selection for our fleet should be based not only on their type but also on other important parameters such as:

  • Assessing the Vehicle’s Needs

Choosing the best tire largely depends on the type of vehicle and its intended use. For passenger vehicles primarily used on paved roads, low rolling resistance tires are the ideal choice to maximize fuel efficiency. For vehicles that require off-road capabilities or high performance, it’s important to balance the need for traction and handling with fuel efficiency. Therefore, it is essential to know the types of routes that our fleet travels (information that will always be available in our fleet management system, FlotasNet) to assess the actual needs.

Truck driver inspecting tires and checking depth of tire tread for safe ride.
  • Understanding Tire Labels

The European Union has implemented a tire labeling system that facilitates the comparison of different models in terms of fuel efficiency, wet grip, and external noise. The label includes a scale from A to E for fuel efficiency, where A represents the best efficiency. By choosing tires rated in category A, drivers significantly improve the fuel efficiency of their vehicle.

  • Regular Maintenance

Regardless of the type of tire chosen, regular maintenance is crucial to ensure that tires function efficiently. Regardless of the type of tire chosen, regular maintenance is crucial to ensure that tires function efficiently. Proper maintenance not only improves fuel efficiency but also prolongs the lifespan of tires. Additionally, this maintenance should be centrally monitored with a proper fleet management system, which allows us to evaluate fleet data effectively.

  • Climate Considerations

Climate and road conditions are important factors to consider when choosing tires. In regions with severe winters, winter tires are essential for safety. However, in warmer climates, summer tires or all-season tires may offer better fuel efficiency.

Definitely, the proper selection and maintenance of tires have a significant impact on a vehicle’s fuel savings. When applied to a fleet, this translates into substantial cost savings.

Opting for tire types that suit our activities and needs, maintaining proper tire pressure, and conducting regular maintenance are key strategies to maximize fuel efficiency. This not only saves costs, as mentioned earlier, but also reduces the environmental impact of our operations.

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