You may be a safe driver who never texts while in the car, but there may be other unintentional habits you’ve learned over the years which could be potentially dangerous for your car and could lead to early wear and tear of several internal components.
The good news is that you can avoid all of these behaviours today. Here’s a list of 10 familiar habits most of us do without knowing the damage it’s causing – see if you are guilty of any of these:
- Reverse to drive
After reversing, make sure you come to a complete stop before you put it into drive or you could damage your drivetrain, as well as your transmission.
- Resting on clutch
This is one most of us are guilty of – but it’s a bad one. It can cause damage to the release bearing and the pressure plate. Plus, the replacement can cost you a lot.
- Resting on the gear lever
It’s better and safer to keep both hands on the steering wheel in case of a sudden need to manoeuvre the car. Resting on the gear lever causes wear by the placing strain on the synchronisers and bushings of the transmission.
- Speeding off
Sometimes you can’t resist the urge, we understand; but speeding off burns more fuel. However, you will also need to slow down at some point, which will cause heavier stress on your rotors and brake pads.
- Revving the engine as you start it
Best advice is to leave your engine for about a minute before driving off. This allows for even distribution of the engine oils and a stabilising of the temperature. Revving doesn’t speed up this process; in fact, it can cause unnecessary temperature changes.
- Driving on empty
It’s always best to fill your car up before the empty tank warning comes on. The reason? Besides getting stuck, the fuel pumps of most vehicles depend on being submerged in the fuel in order not to overheat.
- Not using the parking brake
One of the main reasons, besides helping you prevent rolling back into another vehicle, is that your car’s parking brake helps distribute the heavy weight of the car when standing still. It’s so important to remember your parking brake when you eventually come to a complete stop.
- Using brakes when going downhill
Of course, you want to use the brakes when going downhill in order to slow down or maintain your speed. Tip: try gearing down first and then gently touch on your brakes.
- Carrying heavy, unnecessary loads
It’s a mathematical point we’re making here, that’s pretty simple to understand. The more weight you carry, the more energy you use. The more stuff you have in your car, the more fuel you will burn. Get rid of unnecessary items and leave it in your garage. Not only will you save on fuel, but you’ll also put less stress on your car’s suspensions and brakes.
- Ignoring unusual noises
Crank. Twenty minutes later… Crank. You ignore it and think it will go away. Don’t ignore it. It could be serious. It could mean your wheel bearing is damaged, or a number of things.