If you’ve been driving for a long time, it’s likely your technique has changed and you’ve probably forgotten a lot of what your driving instructor taught you. However, it’s important you practice good driving habits to ensure safety and to prolong the life of your car. Certain bad habits can cause car parts to wear quicker – meaning it costs you more in the long run.
Here are three things you should never do in a manual car:
Often, if the traffic is fast-moving, you may not feel it’s necessary to take your foot off the clutch and take your car out of gear. Not only do you wear out your legs, but you’re also putting extra strain on the clutch that could be causing unnecessary wear and tear. It’s much better to put your car in neutral and apply the handbrake to keep it still. Some people may argue that they don’t want to hold up traffic by delaying with a gear change and using the handbrake off. In reality, it only takes a couple of seconds to put your car back into gear when the lights change.
When you stop on a hill, you need to make sure your car doesn’t start rolling back. Rather than applying the handbrake, some drivers may try to hold their car in place by keeping the clutch at biting point. Doing this means you’re prematurely burning up the friction material on your clutch disc, as the clutch will be spinning at one speed, while the engine’s pressure plate is moving at another. If you have to stop on an incline, apply the handbrake to keep your car still until it’s time to move off.
It was common practice to save fuel by taking your car out of gear when driving down hills. However, the fuel system in modern cars means that coasting is no longer beneficial to energy efficiency. Furthermore, it isn’t safe to drive with your car out of gear because you have less control over the vehicle. When your car isn’t in gear, you aren’t able to accelerate out of a sticky situation and you lose engine braking – running the risk of overheating the brakes when going downhill.
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