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We drive our cars every day but are we driving the right way, our car’s engine, transmission and fuel efficiency are affected negatively due to our driving techniques. With millions of cars on the road, we are faced with bad drivers, stray road animals and a lack of alertness while driving. With my 15+ years of driving experience, I will share a few driving techniques that might help you improve your daily driving and also your car’s life and could also help you to stay away from danger.
You should have 100% attention to the road ahead. Avoid using anything which will take your eyes off the road. In fact, you should have 100% of your physical and mental presence while driving. It is good to anticipate what other drivers will do on the road.
You should also try to see further down the road while taking a turn which will help you take a better turn and avoid any mishap. And it is good practice to honk at least once when you see a blind turn. At night you can look out for lights of the cars coming from the turn, which will help to take a better turn.
You should also see cars ahead at a distance, this will help to control your car better. If possible try to see the brake lights of the cars at least 100m ahead of you, which will help to brake smoothly and keep you out of danger. To do this you should keep a safe distance from the car in front of you.
Merge with the traffic
If you are joining any highway from the service lane you should adequately pick up the speed with the traffic. If you are entering from an entrance road to a highway try to gain speed and switch lanes according to your speed with proper indication. Use the entrance road to gain speed and match the ongoing traffic. Do not enter the fast lane straight away, pick up speed and with proper indication switch lanes.
Go easy on braking, don’t hit your brakes hard in daily driving situations. Hitting brakes hard and frequently will make your brake pads and discs wear out quickly. Try to coast in gear by lifting your legs off the accelerator pedal. Doing this you are using engine braking which will slow your vehicle and give you more room to brake. It will also help you save fuel.
Drive a Manual Transmission
Admit it if you are fond of driving you love Manual transmission cars. Driving a manual transmission car keeps the driver engaged continuously. All your legs and hands are busy and your brain keeps on processing for changing gear pressing the clutch etc. This practice makes a person a better driver. If you are a new driver first drive a manual for a few years. Then after a few years, you can switch to automatic because most of us drive in city traffic, and I understand manual transmissions can be a pain to drive in traffic.
Learn to control Oversteering
If you want to know what is oversteering click here. It is not a major technique if you are not driving outside city limits and within speed limits. But if you are driving on the highway at high speeds, then you must learn to control oversteering
When in the corner press more accelerate pedal and let the backend of the car slide, and then try to control it. But be careful try to practice on a closed road where there are no trees or anything that you might collide into. Taking a professional’s help will be good.
This technique will help you shift faster and increase your transmission life. But honestly, it is a tricky technique and I am still learning it. If you are good at this, you will see a major difference in your driving and the benefits are worth it.
It will sound weird to you, who will drive backwards. But many people lack the basic skill of reversing a car properly. Reversing a car requires rear space awareness and also improves your overall judgement. If you have good control while reversing your car, you will be able to control your car better overall. But you might argue that these days we have a reverse camera. I would say avoid using that and try to see through the rear windshield unless the rear visibility is very low.
Most people hate parking because of the lack of space available for parking. Normal parking can be done by most people. But if you want to park between two cars (parallel parking), you need a lot of skills together which most people lack. You need to have good control of your car in forwarding and reversing, and also a good aim of judgement and concentration. If you can park any car in a tight spot within seconds you have good skills. So practice parallel parking more to get a good hand over it.
These are some driving techniques that will help you improve your daily driving. But if you are new to any technique learn it from a professional before implementing it. Always remember to always concentrate and have a good presence of mind on the road while driving and have patience while driving, you can always avoid a mishap. Also try to anticipate what the other driver is going to do, though it is not easy with practice, you will learn and you will see that you can avoid any major accidents.
We have now ADAS features that help you in a lot of driving, like swtching lanes. maintaining lanes and speed, adaptive cruise control that is useful on highways also in city traffic with stop and go feature. So basically there are now computers that will guide you, but unless we see a full level 5 autonomous vehicle, we should only use these for our guidance and not rely on them fully. We should always wear our seatbelts and be alert 100% while driving.
Hope these driving techniques help you improve your daily driving, if you have any more techniques please drop them in the comments below.
See this video from the Car Throttle YouTube channel, they are good at a lot of car stuff.