Motorists waste £50 million defrosting cars
UK motorists will waste nearly £50 million of fuel this winter by leaving their cars to idle with the engine running in order to defrost them, a new study of regular drivers by Direct Line Car Insurance has discovered.
The fuel wasted equates to over 300 million road miles and would enable someone to drive an average size car more than 13,000 times around the world.
This large amount of money going up in smoke is despite the average person taking only three minutes to defrost their car; with high fuel costs, even the smallest amount of waste can cost motorists dear. The study also found that five per cent of motorists admitted to letting their engine run for ten or more minutes before setting off on their journeys, making them responsible for £2.45 million of the total wasted on fuel.
Wasting money on fuel is not the only thing motorists should be worried about. Of those questioned, 42 per cent admitted to leaving their cars unattended with the keys in the ignition, making them a perfect target for thieves and risking invalidating their insurance should the car be stolen.
Steve Price, head of Direct Line Car Insurance, said: “With fuel prices having risen more than 40 pence per litre since 2007, it makes more sense than ever to consider alternative methods of defrosting your car on icy days.
“It is really important that drivers never leave their cars unattended with the keys in the ignition under any circumstances, but particularly when defrosting their cars. Many of us are pressed for time in the mornings and so leaving your car to warm up whilst running back indoors to tie up some loose ends can seem like a clever use of our time. However, if a theft occurs under these circumstances policyholders may not be covered.”