LERS members are 13% more fuel efficient than industry as a whole and on this page, we have collected practical information to confirm which actions you can take to match their performance and enable you to improve the fuel efficiency of your existing fleet with the trucks you own today.

It is important to emphasise that members achieved the 13% improvement by using their current diesel fleet more efficiently, and not by switching to alternatively fuelled or powered vehicles.

We surveyed scheme members to find out the best measures to improve efficiency and ranked them on terms of investment for your use. The results have created the below list of Six Quick Wins for Reducing Fuel Use in a Diesel Fleet, in order of success.

1- Fuel Efficient Driving Training

Driving technique coupled with regular daily checks can have a significant effect on the performance of a vehicle.   Fuel efficient driver training remedies bad driving behaviours including engine idling, unnecessary accelerating and harsh braking with more fuel-efficient techniques. Maintaining a constant speed to reduce the need for harsh braking and accelerating, changing gears earlier, reducing engine idling, and limiting the use of air conditioning can all contribute to increased fuel efficiency.  However good a driver feels they are, there is usually more things to learn. Read more…

2- Telematics and Driver Analytics

Telematics are in-cab systems used to monitor a wide range of information relating to an individual vehicle or an entire fleet. The IT system is able to track and monitor a journey and can provide data to enable a fleet operator to make strategic and daily management decisions and has the potential to deliver significant cost and carbon savings. 

Telematics captures data on individual driving style, compliance with drivers’ hours rules, fuel consumption and monitors both good and bad driving techniques. Operators can then reward drivers who are delivering an improvement and recommend remedial training for those that need some additional support. The use of this is important to ensure lasting benefits from driver training. Read more…

3- Route Optimisation

There are multiple route planning software solutions and digital maps of the road network available which can be used to optimise your fleet scheduling. Using the best route between destinations can minimise mileage and boost the efficiency of your vehicle fleet. With every kilometre saved through optimised routing and scheduling, you are reducing fuel costs whilst cutting emissions. Read more…

4- Tyre Management Processes

Correctly inflated tyres are vital to the safe operation of any vehicle, but tyre inflation has also been shown to be an important factor in fuel efficiency. A 20 per cent drop in tyre pressure can increase fuel consumption by two per cent. Regularly checking tyre pressures minimises the rolling resistance and will reduce the fuel consumption of a vehicle. Operating with low rolling resistance tyres will further increase fuel efficiency, as they require less fuel to propel the vehicle forward. Many leading manufacturers are encouraging operators to use lower resistance tyres to improve their fuel economy and reduce their environmental impact. Read more…

5- Reducing Empty Running

Empty running has a high economic cost due to the wastage of fuel, driving time and the added congestion caused. Obviously empty running will always be inescapable for some of the time, and unavoidable half the time for many types of movements (e.g. refuse collection, fuel deliveries).  But in cases where loads are less specialised and so the vehicles more suited to multi use, or there are a number of company sites and numerous vehicles available, well thought out utilisation of the spare capacity of the fleet could result in less overall fuel consumption and therefore emissions. This requires more work than some of the other options here, but even small achievements provide big commercial and emissions wins. 

In 2018, the LERS Leadership in Fuel Efficiency Award was presented to John Raymond Transport for their impressive and comprehensive transport management system which enables them to track their drivers in real time and links them with loads to optimise synergies and minimise empty running.  Read more…

6- Aerodynamics

As HGVs tend to have large flat front and rear ends, they have a significant air drag profile which creates considerable air turbulence around the vehicle, creating more resistance, and resulting in more fuel needed to power the vehicle forward. Aerodynamic technologies including boat tails, side skirts and body deflectors have been designed to reduce this drag, reducing the amount of fuel needed to power the vehicle. The most significant savings with aerodynamics can be achieved on vehicles travelling at constant speeds and so are naturally better suited to heavier vehicles on the longer trunking routes. Analysis of responses suggests the reason this was lower on the list was that for respondents using shorter journeys with a higher frequency of intermittent driving, results were less impressive.  This is one option suited to particular types of movement. Read more…

Bonus Point

Lubricants

The use of advance, high-performance lubricants can help reduce fuel costs. Switching from a mineral engine oil to a low viscosity, full synthetic alternative has many benefits. Tests have shown that a change from mineral to low viscosity synthetic lubrication in commercial vehicles also provides potential for notable fuel savings, and better protection against wear and deposit formation, which can cause costly maintenance bills. Read more in our case study here.

What do you do if you have already optimised the efficiency of your diesel fleet? Discover how you could go beyond diesel efficiency