Automatic Car Driving for Beginners

Automatic cars are becoming increasingly popular – but how do you do about driving one? You may well find that driving an automatic is a more pleasant driving experience than that provided by a manual – but how do you get started? We’ve rounded up the basics below.

Familiarise yourself

Once you’re in the car and you’ve checked the seat and mirrors are in the right positions, it’s time to familiarise yourself with the controls and pedals – remember in an automatic you just have a brake (on the left) and an accelerator (on the right).

It’s also crucial you familiarise yourself with the gear box. You’ll find the gear selector where a traditional manual gear stick is placed, between the driver’s and the passenger seat, or to the side of the steering wheel. As you’ll see, it’s quite different to a manual gear stick; you’ll usually have four choices where to put the gear selector:  ‘P’, ‘R’, ‘N’ and ‘D’, denoting park, reverse, neutral and drive.

That might seem a lot of choice for a car that’s meant to be ‘automatic’, but you’ll see the choices soon narrow themselves down, making them much less onerous. Here’s how they work:

  • Park is only ever used once the car is stationary and safely parked, only then do you choose ‘P’. So you use it when you’ve finished driving, as you do the handbrake, ensuring your car doesn’t go anywhere until you next need it.
  • Reverse, as you would expect, for driving backwards. Neutral on the other hand can be used when you’ve stopped for short periods, in just such instances when you would apply the handbrake too. ‘Drive’ of course allows your car to move, and this is when an automatic comes into its own, as you don’t need to select a gear.

Some automatics also come with an additional first or second gear, which can be helpful in some circumstances, like negotiating a steep incline or preventing your wheels from spinning in inclement weather conditions. Moreover, some automatics give you the option to control gears either from paddles on the dashboard or via the gear selector.

Drive it

But how to go about driving it? First, check the car has been left in the ‘park’ position. Then put your foot on the brake, put the key in the ignition and turn it clockwise. While keeping your foot on the brake, move the gear selector to ‘Drive’ or ‘Reverse’, as you require, and take off the handbrake.

As you lift your foot off the brake, you’ll find the car begins to move gently. If you are on a hill, you may need to add some acceleration, but otherwise, the car will choose the right gear for your journey. If you are ever stationary for more than 5-10 seconds during your journey, then apply the handbrake.  Once you’ve reached your destination and are safely parked; then select the ‘Park’ option, put on the handbrake, turn off the ignition and exit.

Practice

Driving an automatic car may seem strange at first, but the key is to get to know your new car well and give yourself time to practise driving it. Learn to slow down and apply the brake sooner than you would in a manual car, for instance when you are approaching a corner. Also familiarise yourself with the different use of the accelerator, using it to give your car ‘oomph’ when you’d use a low gear in a manual car. However, once you’ve got used to these differences, you’ll find automatic cars make for a very relaxing driving experience.

Want to keep your current car running safely and efficiently? Make sure that your tyres are in full working order, and check out the tyres Swindon section of the Wiltshire Tyres website to find out more.

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What drives British motorists mad?

New survey shows what really drives British motorists mad

Driving, it can be the best of times or the worst of times, but in this modern age of congestion and bad drivers it is becoming more frustrating by the day. A new survey by YourParkingSpace into the driving habits of the British has revealed just what drives motorists mad.

The results showed that people not indicating annoyed British motorists the most, while using a mobile phone and bad parking both featured highly on the list. The survey polled 1,028 drivers throughout the UK asking ‘What annoys you the most about being a car driver in the UK?’ the full results are below:

  1. People not indicating (72%)
  2. Talking on a mobile phone (71%)
  3. Bad parking (56%)
  4. Traffic Jams (52%)
  5. Slow drivers (42%)
  6. Not being able to find a parking space (40%)

The data also showed that men were more likely to get annoyed by slow drivers, but both sexes found not indicating and talking on a mobile phone to be equally as irritating. Furthermore 40% of drivers polled stated that trying to find a suitable parking space was frustrating.

Bad parking- grr!

Bad parking- grr!

YourParkingSpace wanted to find out more about the issue of parking, so asked those participants who had chosen parking as their most frustrating option how they felt about parking charges in their local area.

48% stated that they thought that parking charges were too expensive, while 29% said that they were reasonable in their local area.

What do you think of parking charges in your local area?

  • Parking charges are too expensive – 48%
  • Parking charges are reasonable – 29%
  • Parking is free – 23%

The data show that parking fee opinions varied greatly depending on location with over 40% of drivers in England stating that parking was too expensive, while only 29% of Scottish drivers felt the same. Coincidentally Scotland seemed to have the highest number of free parking spaces with a third of drivers from north of the border indicating they can park for free.

Managing Director of YourParkingSpace, Harrison Woods, commented on the survey:

“It is interesting to look into the psyche of the British driver, to see what they like and what irritates them about driving. People not indicating and using mobile phones when driving are not only irritating to other road users, but also very dangerous, causing accidents and damage as well as breaking the law. “

He added:

“One thing that didn’t surprise us was the fact that 40% of motorists become frustrated when searching for parking spaces and that a large proportion of those questioned felt that parking charges were too expensive. Parking spaces have become a premium commodity in recent years, especially in major cities, and the fact that parking spaces have been getting smaller and cars getting bigger has just exacerbated the situation.”

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How Much Money Can You Make from Renting Your Driveway?

By Permalink

London is a heaving, thriving metropolis, a place where everyone wants to be and be seen. But it is a city short on one thing: space.

Space for people- from housing to pavement space is at a premium. Finding a parking spot is virtually impossible. And when you do, can be cripplingly expensive. Add on to the congestion charge for driving the capital’s streets, and you can see how expensive it can be.

But, you may think, living miles away in the surrounding London suburbs, this may not worry you. You don’t commute into the capital, you have no congestion charge, and therefore, you are not footing this bill.

rent-your-driveway

But that empty driveway space outside your home could be worth money. Commuters park in streets and avenues around stations, blocking driveways and rights of way. We have all seen the issues that householders face. Perhaps it’s time to think differently about this problem and how you could be part of the solution.

Driveway rental = £

If you have space for one or more cars to be parked on your driveway, you could be sitting on a gold mine. Commuters are prepared to pay to park their cars in a secure spot. And you could command a fairly decent price every day of the week too.

There are various factors that affect how much you could earn…

  • Your postcode – some areas closer to the capital and/or major event centres can be lucrative and sought after parking spots
  • Proximity to station – from a 5-minute walk to a 20-minute dash, being within striking distance of a main train line station can also affect how much cash your driveway can generate
  • Driveway or garage? – from secure parking on a driveway behind a gate or, for some drivers this is an absolute must, a garage with a door can all mean big bucks
  • Tea or no tea? – sometimes, a pleasant refreshment break and a chat is also on the cards and if you can provide this, then you may be able to command an even higher price.

Make money – rent your driveway today!

There is a growing need and a pressing demand for secure, cheap off-road parking within a 50-mile radius of the capital. And this demand is set to rise as the capital carries on growing, so if you have a driveway with parking for at least one vehicle, why not sign up with www.spacehopper.com and rent it out?

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