How do green cars save you money?
Sick of paying those all-too-high prices at the petrol pump? You are not the only one. This is a reason why many car manufacturers are designing hybrid, electric and hydrogen-cell green cars.
So, what are these different types of environmentally-friendly cars and how do they work to save you money?
Green cars generally have a higher purchase cost, but work to save you money on your running costs. Hybrid vehicles are no exception.
Hybrids use a combination of a conventional petrol engine with an electric one. The electric motor runs on batteries. These are charged by the petrol engine and regenerative brakes. Energy is conserved when the car is running at low speeds, as this is when only the zero-emission electric engine is used.
Extra power is then used when the car accelerates, and this comes straight from the petrol engine.
A parallel hybrid car is where the petrol and electric engines work together to move the car forward, while series hybrid models are where the electric motor is powered by the vehicle or charges the batteries that power the motor.
Now, there are new developments including "plug-in" hybrid models that have many of the same benefits. The only difference is that they can be plugged into your electric outlets at home for recharging when you are not behind the wheel.
These are similar to "plug-in hybrid" models, with one exception - there is no back up petrol engine to rely on. These cars only run on the juice they receive from being plugged in at home.
If you want to ensure you maintain reduced electricity prices when you use this type of car, you can make a few changes to keep them low.
For example, charging only during the off-peak times at night can make a huge difference, as you won't be paying full price for your power needs.
Some models allow you to set a timer so they can start charging at a specific point in the night - this could be worth looking into if you want to pay less to electricity suppliers when you are going from A to B in your car.
A relatively new development to the market is this range of cars. Instead of being charged by electricity or using petrol to run, these draw power from a hydrogen cell.
These cars have no greenhouse gases, only emitting water as the hydrogen in the tank mixes with oxygen to create H2O.
Posted by Tim Wolfenden.