Nonprofit Insurance Program

Is your Car eating your $?

By Alexa Connelly
February 09, 2012

Does it make sense to replace your Nonprofit Organization’s gas guzzler with a hybrid or electric vehicle? Well, that depends on your volunteers driving habits as well as your attitude towards burning oil. We’ll leave the second part of that argument to you, but on the cost side there’s a straightforward financial calculation to do: home much you’ll save on fuel cost versus the higher price tag of the vehicle.

Fortunately, someone’s already done the hard work by putting together an online calculator where you just key in the numbers. In fact you’ll find several online but a good example is at http://tinyurl.com/hybrid-calc because it allows you to add in any state of federa; tax incentives that happen to be in force.

Even without buying a hybrid or electric car, you can reduce your fuel consumption, and therefore save money for your Nonprofit Organization, just by improving your driving habits and vehicle maintenance. The US Department of Energy reckons you can save up to a third of your fuel cost this way. For example:

  • Follow your auto’s recommended maintenance schedule will keep the engine running at peak efficiency.
  • Staying within the speed limit, and braking and accelerating gradually rather than sharply
  • Removing heavy stuff you don’t need from the trunk or elsewhere. (Hold on, don’t throw the kits out – joke!)
  • Using cruise control and overdrive gears if available.
  • Minimizing the amount of idling, especially in larger vehicles.
  • Car-pooling and combining trips – arranging multiple visits on one journey.

For most helpful hints, visit the Energy Department’s www.fueleconomy.gov website.

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