The 10 most common mistakes when driving a car

"both hands on the steering wheel!", "watch out, right before left", "don’t forget shoulder vision". reading these sentences probably reminds everyone of their driving instructor. As often as you have heard these typical phrases during your driving lessons, the quicker you forget them over the years. Over time, some people get used to making minor or major mistakes while driving – sometimes without realizing it. The consequences can be serious: driving mistakes lead to more wear and tear on the vehicle, and they can also put you and other road users in danger. Find out what the typical driving mistakes are and how you can avoid them in this article.

Mistake 1: constant braking when going downhill

Attention is required when going downhill. If you are constantly standing on the brakes on descents, they can quickly overheat. Constant braking leads to rapid wear of the brakes and, in the worst case, failure of the brakes on the downhill slope. You should therefore avoid constant downhill braking at all costs. You can save the brakes by stepping on the brakes a little harder in between and then letting the car coast to a stop. Also use the engine brake: simply shift down one or two gears during the descent. this will cause the engine to rev higher, but it will also limit the speed and allow the brake to cool down again a bit. As a rule of thumb: drive downhill in the same gear as uphill.

If you travel frequently in the mountains, it is advisable to change the brake fluid every year.

Mistake 2: wrong shoes

Especially in summer, many people tend to wear loose shoes like flip-flops. However, if you drive in flip-flops, it is easy to get caught in the floor mat or slip on one of the pedals. Therefore, it is important to ride with shoes in which you have a firm footing. In the summer, pack a change of shoes, such as sneakers or closed-toe sandals, so you can drive safely.

Loose footwear causes you to slip off the pedal

To avoid slipping off the pedal, sturdy shoes are essential when driving a car.

Mistake 3: Turning the steering wheel when stationary

Especially when parking, many people tend to jerk the steering wheel while standing still. However, it is important to avoid turning the steering wheel while the wheels are stationary. If you don’t, this will result in increased tire wear.

Mistake 4: Putting your hand on the gear shift

Putting your hand on the gearshift lever while driving has already become a habit for many people. Not without reason did the driving instructor always say: "both hands on the handlebars"!"your hands should not only grip the steering wheel for safety – mind you in the "quarter to three" steering wheel position – but also to protect the transmission. If you put one hand on the gearshift while riding, the shift fork will constantly press on the shift sleeve. In the case of a transmission with a classic shift linkage, this leads to more wear.

For your safety, grip the steering wheel with both hands while driving.

Mistake 5: ballast in the trunk

Often useless things are stowed in the trunk and sometimes driven for weeks through the area. Many people don’t know that extra weight is a real drain on the wallet. A heavy vehicle significantly increases fuel consumption. Constant acceleration in the city also has a negative effect. As a rule of thumb: 100 kilograms of extra weight increases fuel consumption by up to 0.5 liters per 100 kilometers. If this is not a good reason to completely clean out the trunk again!

Mistake 6: always depress the clutch at traffic lights

A common behavior at red lights is to immediately shift into first gear and depress the clutch until the light turns green. If this behavior sounds familiar to you, you should quickly get out of the habit. The clutch release bearing is subjected to so much stress that the entire load of the clutch spring rests on the component. If the release bearing is badly damaged, the entire clutch must be replaced, which can be very expensive.

Mistake 7: avoid traffic jams by changing lanes frequently

Nobody likes to stand in a traffic jam. It is a fallacy, however, to think that changing lanes frequently will result in faster progress. As soon as there is a gap in the next lane, many drivers believe that this lane is faster and change to the next lane. Then you suddenly notice that the traffic is slow again and you take advantage of the next gap and switch back to the other lane – this means that other drivers have to wait again and lane-hopping only prolongs the traffic jam further. Therefore, it is better to stay on your track to be patient. Incidentally, it is also true that when lanes are narrowed, you should drive through to the beginning of the narrowing and only then pull into the lane in a zippered pattern.

Error 8: incorrect tire pressure

The tires are the connection between the vehicle and the road, so it is important that they are in good condition. unfortunately, the wrong tire pressure has several consequences: if you drive with a low If you ride with low tire pressure, the tires will wear faster because there is too much friction. In addition, the increased rolling resistance increases fuel consumption. However, if you drive with too a lot of pressure on the tires, this reduces the adhesion on the road.

to make sure you don’t drive with the wrong tire pressure, it’s best to check the owner’s manual of your vehicle – here you’ll find all the information about the correct pressure. It is important that you follow the manufacturer’s pressure specifications. For a long tire life, it is recommended to check the tire pressure every two to four weeks. When checking the tire pressure, make sure that the tires are cold (even longer rides can warm up the tire), because temperature fluctuations can lead to a change in the air pressure in the tire.

Incorrect tire pressure leads to faster wear or less adhesion of the transporter tire.

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Christina Cherry
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