It is a universal fact that learning anything new is always very challenging. Be it learning to play a musical instrument or picking up a new sport, the first few days will definitely feel daunting. Same is the case with driving. During your initial stages, you may struggle quite a bit. But fret not, Formula-1 legends like Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton had also started from the same stage. In this article, we will list out some simple pointers that will certainly help you during your initial phase of driving a car. So let’s commence with our list of the essential car driving tips for beginners.
Also read – How to Drive a Car
The first and most important car driving tips and tricks when you start learning how to drive is to acquaint yourself with the vehicle. Before you step inside and start meddling with the various knobs and buttons, understand their functions first. Learn what each every button does in your car so that you know what to use when the situation arises. Next understand the three main pedals, the accelerator, brake and clutch.
Among the simplest new car driving techniques is to remember the foot controls as ABC from the left to the right, where A,B and C represent the Accelerator, Brake and Clutch respectively. Lastly, familiarize yourself with the gear knob and the positions of the various gears. You can practice shifting when the car is off but avoid doing it too much as it damages your gearbox. Understand the positions of all the gears in a way such that you don’t have to look at the knob ever while shifting.
Also read – Maruti Suzuki Driving School’s
This is a very crucial point and is something that a lot of people often tend to ignore. Most newbies to car driving are completely unaware that every car has an adjustable seat position mechanism. The mechanism allows you to adjust the seat reach as well as the angle. It is crucial that you position the seat in a manner in which you are comfortably able to access all the controls of the car namely, the pedals, the steering and the gear lever. You must ensure that the seat is angled in a way such that your back or thigh areas aren’t strained.
Another thing that people are highly unaware about is the restriction of different licenses. When you have a learner’s license, it is imperative to ensure certain things. Firstly it is necessary to have the “L” symbol stuck to the front and back of your car in the appropriate sizes as dictated by the Government of India. Secondly, it is imperative to have a person in the passenger seat who has a valid permanent driver’s license. Even after you get a permanent license, you are only allowed to drive the certain type of vehicles. You are made to select the kind of vehicles you wish to drive while you apply for it initially. Hence if you are driving a type of vehicle which is not prescribed in your license, you will be reprimanded.
Once you are ready to start moving, you must now figure out the appropriate input levels. The steering wheel, the pedals and the gear lever are all dependent on your inputs. Hence, you must meticulously figure out how much input you are supposed to give for each component. The most important of all car steering control tips is to start off slow and with minimal input. It is best recommended that you try this drill in an open ground or an empty road.
Begin with the lightest and smallest inputs at low speeds for all components. As you practice more, you can increase the effort you apply. Sudden inputs to the steering wheel or the accelerator can very well result in instant loss of control and put you in a dangerous situation. Hence, increasing the level of effort you put slowly is the best practice to tackle this method. With practice and a little bit of trial and error, you will be able to easily find the level of optimum input which will settle into your sub-conscience with time.
A wise man once said, “learn to walk before running”. This philosophy is completely applicable to driving cars as well. It is an undeniable fact that flooring the accelerator pedal is very tempting. However, before you start chasing velocity, it is imperative that you get accustomed to driving at slow speeds thoroughly. This allows you to build a strong sense of perception and reaction. Driving at high speeds requires your reactions to be at pinpoint accuracy. Driving at high speeds without building up your reaction senses is a sure shot recipe for disaster. Ensure that you have spent a lot of time honing up your skills at lower speeds before putting a pedal to the metal. This is yet another simple but another of utterly useful car driving tips and tricks.
In overseas countries, all drivers have an inculcated habit of maintaining a safe distance from the car in front of them. Sadly in India, the case is exactly the opposite. On our country’s roads, the cars are as tightly packed as atoms in a molecule. People tend to blatantly ignore this concept and pretty much drive as they please. However, it is always recommended that you maintain a safe distance of at least two cars from the vehicle in front of you. In case the car in front is forced to swerve and or perform an emergency manoeuvre due to an obstacle on the road, you will have an ample amount of space to avert a collision. Inculcating this habit in the beginning stages can greatly help you in the future.
When you are driving, you only have two sources of communication with the drivers around you. One is your indicators and the second is your horn. Hence, you must use both of them very liberally and smartly as and when required. In general, the horn should only be used to alert other cars about your presence. Many people do have a habit of profusely honking the horn at signals and slow-moving traffic to indicate the people ahead to move faster. This practice is wrong and should certainly not be followed. Similarly when you are turning, always ensure that you are using your indicators. Even when you are changing lanes, be sure to use the indicators in that direction. This is to ensure the driver behind you knows you are turning and maintains distance accordingly.
During the initial stages of driving, it is recommended that you stick to driving on the routes you are thoroughly familiar with. If you go to unexplored areas, you need to pay extra attention to the direction you are going. As a beginner, you are better off having that utilized in the driving aspect than the navigation. Also try to avoid highways as the average speed of other vehicles is much higher. Driving at your leisurely pace in such an environment isn’t very safe.
When you are driving a car, it is absolutely necessary that your presence of mind is completely focused only on the road. Driving in a bad or tensed mood can act as a major distraction to your driving. As a beginner, you will need a lot of thought input for your driving actions. Hence having a distraction in your driving-related thoughts can easily cause you to make a mistake. Similarly also ensure that you are adequately well-rested and aware of your surroundings in case you decide to take the wheel.
The last point in our post on car driving tips and tricks for beginners is the usage of dashcams. Dashcams are the new things in the auto industry and are gaining popularity at a rapid rate. A dashcam records everything that you will encounter while you are driving. In case you do encounter a mishap, people will be ready to pass the blame onto you even if it was their fault. When you have dashcam footage to prove you weren’t wrong, there’s really not much they can do.
Also Read: Advantages of Using a Dashcam
A. You can refer to all our car driving tips mentioned above to become a better driver. The above guide not only helps new drivers with various tricks and techniques but can even help someone who has been driving for a while get better with his driving practices.
A. There is no definite answer to this. Basically, it all depends from one person to another. While some take just a day or two to get comfortable behind the steering wheel, others might take weeks or, in some cases, even months before they get confident enough to drive around. Our advice is to be patient when learning to drive a car and practice with an experienced driver until you get totally confident behind the steering wheel.
A. Before you start driving, it is vital to familiarize yourself with the controls of the vehicle You can quickly become a master of any vehicle once you can smoothly operate each and every control of the vehicle and use it as per your liking. Hence, before you even start learning to drive, make sure to understand each and every control of the vehicle.
A. No, not really. Driving a car can be as easy as running or walking once you get comfortable behind the wheel. For this, you need to practice hard, keep in mind all the rules and traffic laws and familiarize yourself well with the vehicle.
A. You need to remember that confidence is a by-product of patience. Hence, confidence in driving comes with time and a lot of practice. So, to become a confident driver, you need to put in many miles behind the steering wheel and improve on the weak areas of your driving.
A. Fear of driving can be caused by anything ranging from a traffic challan or a small mishap or damage to your brand-new vehicle. That said, we advise all drivers that there is nothing to be afraid about. Like we just said, confidence in driving comes only with time and hard practice should help you mitigate all your features. Again, our aforementioned new car driving tips for beginners should help you clear most of your doubts in this aspect.
A. It’s not a good idea to single out the ‘best’ car for driving. Actually, it all depends from one driver to another. Many might find compact cars like Maruti Alto and Maruti Swift easy to drive while others might prefer an SUV like a Mahindra XUV500 or Toyota Fortuner for the commanding driving position they offer. Hence, it would be a bad idea to single out just one type of car here.
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