Nowadays, more and more people are going for a class 3A license instead of a usual class 3 license.
An automatic transmission is far more straightforward and convenient since you don’t have to keep switching gears. Perfect for people who have problems with coordination, eh?
However, although driving an automatic car is much simpler, there are still some relatively unknown things that people tend to overlook.
And let’s face it: even if our driving instructor has once told us about these, we’ve, so to speak, thrown these “facts” off the car.
Never put a vehicle on neutral when moving downhill
You might be thinking that this saves energy since the engine won’t be running as much as when on “Driving”. However, the car is already smart enough to reduce the fuel usage on its own, so there is no point in setting it to neutral.
Furthermore, you also lose some control over your car, which can be incredibly dangerous, especially since you’re going downslope. Keeping it at “D” will in fact slow the car if needed, as the engine is running and it will do an “engine brake” for you without you knowing.
Don’t try and launch your car
Some people set the mode to neutral and start accelerating before they quickly switch to drive, hoping that the car will be able to “launch forward” quickly and move off, like what you see in movies.
This might save you a few seconds of your time, but it is an expensive price to pay since it wears out the pricey transmission bands quickly. And not to mention the accident that you might cause with your launch.
Don’t bother setting to neutral or parking at traffic lights.
It’s a waste of your time. It won’t save you any additional fuel since your engine is still running anyway. Doing that will only wear out your transmission band more quickly (and also wear you out).
Remember, your automatic car is probably smarter than you – it will automatically cut fuel usage. Give some credit to people who invented the car, would you?
Always stop before switching directions
At the carpark, many drivers like to just simply switch from Driving to Reverse into the parking lot without applying the brakes.
This can wear out the transmission as you are using the transmission to stop the car abruptly rather than using your brakes. Between changing your transmission and your brake pads, which one would you prefer?
Always stop completely before you shift to “park”.
There is a locking pin that stops your transmission from running once you are in parking mode. If your car is still moving when you shift, it can break or damage the pin. Seriously, are you really in such a rush?
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This article was first published on goodyfeed.com in 2016 and revised on 14 July 2017.
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