Understanding The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Manual And Automatic Transmission

When learning to drive, many people believe that the most important parts of a car are safety ratings, stereo systems, as well as engine and fuel efficiency. They might have missed the most integral part of all: the transmission. If the transmission is a bust, you will be left wondering why things are not working. In fact, driving lessons heavily rely on the type of transmissions you have access to and how flexible you can adapt to the changing road conditions. In this post, we look into the pros and cons of learning to drive with a manual or automatic transmission.

Automatic Transmission

While auto transmissions are preferred by many auto-makers and buyers, this doesn’t imply they are the best option for everybody. Here are a few things you need to consider when learning to drive:

  • They Are Easier to Use

Unlike cars with manual transmission, automatic cars are easier to drive. For beginners, they are hugely preferred since they offer a more comfortable and straightforward way to control the steering wheel. They also boost learners’ confidence and predictability.

Many driver instructors teach that keeping both hands on the wheel is a rule of thumb for safety and attentiveness. Automatic cars are ideal for this. There is absolutely no need to keep switching the gears while driving.

  • Reliability

Automatic transmission vehicles offer an exceptional level of reliability. The engine is less likely to stall, which may happen due to an imbalance between the clutch pedal and the throttle. For rough and hilly terrains, automatic transmission vehicles are the best catch.

  • Better To Use In Heavy Traffic

Overall, more work goes into starting, speeding up, decelerating, and stopping manual transmissions. This is not normally a problem. However, in heavy traffic where a car is not able to get right up to speed, continuous starting and stopping turn into a hard task. Automatic gears allow the drivers to go through heavy traffic without any stress.

Manual Transmission

  • Less Expensive

Automatic transmission vehicles are highly complex. However, manual gearboxes are actually very simple. Fewer moving parts in manual transmission hugely cut down on maintenance and repair costs. Also, in matters fuel efficiency, manual vehicles are the best choice for many drivers. You can easily maintain a steady RPM count without changing the gears without notice. The manual transmission can actually save up to 15% on fuel costs.

  • Better Control

Another benefit of driving a manual transmission vehicle is the hard-learned yet valuable lessons it gives you. As a manual vehicle driver, you will easily learn what is required of you in terms of driver input. While an automatic vehicle downshifts for you on a long steep road, with a manual vehicle you have to do it yourself. Operating a manual transmission car gives you the opportunity to learn and master its inner workings, which means you are better prepared if anything goes wrong. However, you have to be very cautious of miss-timed shifts.

Final Word – Manual or Automatic?

Both manual and automatic transmission vehicles have their own downsides and upsides. Each transmission has to be operated differently depending on the circumstances at hand. The best driving school in Malden offers both theoretical and practical lessons on how best to operate the two types of cars. But it is highly recommended that as a beginner, you should start with an automatic vehicle because it offers you the ability to inspire confidence and consistency. With confidence, you can concentrate on other important things; how to ensure you drive safely. Being an all-rounded driver, you will certainly be way ahead when it comes to understanding the basics of automatic and manual transmission vehicles.

How To Drive Safely At Night

Many drivers complain about feeling less safe while driving at night, and this includes those who don’t have vision complications such as night blindness. Combine less confidence with other aspects, such as bad weather conditions, exhaustion, and the risk of driving at night is even worse. Since more drivers lack night driving knowledge, not forgetting the confidence, it is a good idea to learn some tips in terms of road safety and night driving in advance.

Be More Alert 

The easiest way to prevent an accident at night is to be watching for lights, motion, and regularly check all your car mirrors. It is crucial to look out for other cars’ headlights. During the night, it is harder to see pets on the street, kids and this may easily turn into a problem.

Stay alert simply by checking out your mirrors regularly to understand what is going on around you. Sometimes, especially during the night, it is even riskier to be distracted by other driver’s mistakes than to bother about your own. Likewise, be sure you keep the mirrors tidy and have of them pointed in a direction that will make it easier for you to see all sides of your car.

Stay Awake

Even though many drivers prefer night driving because it is cooler and roads are not as much congested, it could be even more dangerous. Because the body, for most of us, is familiar with sleeping once the dark sets in.  Plan accordingly and be aware of this.

Do Not Drive Too Fast

Over speeding is a prohibited practice during the day and at night as well.  Ensure you are in control of the steering wheel and always drive at a manageable speed. This is important since night driving requires caution and good diving skills.

Keep Your Distance

Accidents commonly happen when you are too close to another vehicle. If a vehicle ahead or behind you suddenly breaks down or loses control, you may end up in an accident. It is recommended that you keep a safe distance to avoid accidents like this.

Do Clean Your Mirrors

To enhance visibility as you drive at night, clean your car windscreen and side mirrors before you get on the road. This will ensure visibility, guaranteeing your safety while driving.

Do Not Get Distracted

Although mostly overlooked, distractions are some of the major causes of night driving accidents. Loud music or a ringing phone can easily cause an accident.

Do Make Necessary Changes To Your Vehicle

Adjusting your car is a great way to make it ready for a smooth night drive. You can start by checking the headlights to ensure they are in good shape, and replace them if necessary.

Keep Your Eyes Healthy

Good eyesight is integral to safe driving, especially at night. You should take eye tests every 2-3 years if you are over 60 years old. If you wear contact lenses or sunglasses, clean them to make sure they are clear so you can easily see the road.

Clean Your Car Windows

Cleaning your car windows helps you to get rid of smears which may affect your visibility while driving at night. You will see more clearly which hugely reduces chances of an accident.

Do Not Stare At Oncoming Lights

Staring at oncoming lights is dangerous because it can take your concentration off the steering. Try to focus on other things on the road instead.

Dim Your Dashboard

A bright dashboard is dangerous particularly when driving at night. With pitch darkness outside, the dashboard’s brightness may be too bright which can cause a distraction, and this may lead to an accident. If you notice that the lights on the dashboard are too bright, be sure to adjust its overall brightness.

Keep An Eye Out For Animals

Country roads are filled with all sorts of small creatures which are not easily seen at night. This may cause panic or loss of concentration, which may lead to an accident. It is good to drive more slowly and cautiously. Be on the lookout for scurrying movements and headlight reflections in animal’s eyes.

Get the Benefits of Drivers’ Education

Even though it is simple to learn to drive alone or from someone who is not a professional instructor, this is not recommended. You might develop unsafe driving practices and learn incorrect skills. Even the slightest mistakes made while driving, may cause an accident that could be prevented from the get-go. An experienced driving instructor in Malden will offer driving lessons designed for your skill level, and he or she is ready to rectify your weaknesses to make sure you get proper education and experience. The instructor will certainly teach you through clear demonstration, illustration, and observation. He or she give you feedback by the end of every lesson, so you can become a proficient driver after your driving course.

Right Of Way Principles You Must Know

What do you usually do when a driver seems to go in your way down the road and that same driver will drive ahead because he think he is in the right of way? Sometimes, you feel angry about it, right? Well, the question here is: who is in the right of way? Right of way is a rule that says which car or driver should go first in case they meet another down the road.

If this rule is not followed, there is a chance for emotions bursting up and putting another one’s life in danger. Failure to yield right of way results to a lot of crashes down the road, and a big portion of the total has been recorded as fatal. It pays to review right of way principles then to avoid a fatal crash.

Pedestrians must be given the right of way always

When you see someone crossing along the same path you are driving on, that person has the right of way always. It is best to stop or at least slow down your car when you see a pedestrian who is crossing the road. Even when the pedestrian seems to be breaking the law, you have to give him the benefit by stopping and letting him cross.

Always obey traffic signs and road signals

You will always know through traffic signs if it is your turn to drive and go ahead. That is the green light on the traffic sign. If you need to wait then you have to let another driver go ahead. It is his right after all, as the sign indicates.

Never force your way into a lane

If you have always been driving mad and you seem to insist you can take a lane even if it is already taken then drop that habit. You should see to it that you do not get into any other’s way when driving. The other driver knows his right and will definitely not let another driver in as simple as that.

In driving, whoever comes first gets to go first

Remember the saying “first come, first served” This reminder is not just applicable in restaurants or when falling in line. It also applies to right of way principles. That is why if you meet another car in the intersection, whoever got there first should always go ahead first. Do not make it a habit to get the spot if you just came in second.

Right of way rules principle may also vary from one road to another

Allow drivers on paved roads to go first if you are coming from an unpaved road. If you are on a two-lane road, you have to allow cars on those roads that have more lanes to go first. It is as simple as the fact that you have to yield to cars on a six-lane road if you are on a four-lane road. Add to this, you must also yield to the other car when it is already on the road and you are still coming out from an alley or a private driveway.

Always yield to the car that is located on the right

If the principles above don’t seem clear, always make the driver on the right go first if you are on the left. It is about taking turns when going clockwise on an intersection. Sometimes, you must just give the other the right of way in order to avoid accidents down the road.

It is always best to pay respect to the other party down the road – whether it is another driver or a pedestrian. If you exercise patience and caution, you will be able to avoid accidents down the road. Learn more about all these right of way principles through a professional driving school in Malden.

The Most Dangerous Driving Habits You Must Avoid

There will come a time in your life when you have to deal with bad drivers or bad driving skills. In fact, if you are a driver yourself, you may have encountered many of them down the road. Understand that some people do not even know that there is something bad with what they are doing and because of that it becomes a habit. If you are a driver, here are the most dangerous driving habits you must avoid to help save lives.

Going over the speed limit

Every city or state has its own rules when it comes to speed limits. Many drivers out there think it is okay to go 10 miles per hour above the speed limit. They presume that they can easily slowdown in case a police officer can be spotted along the highway. This is a bad habit that someone else may carry anytime, anywhere. Take the risk and you will surely put you and anybody’s life in danger on the road.

Driving without a license

Securing a driver’s license is very much important in many countries all over the world. Your license signifies that you are prepared to be a responsible driver. Take note – a responsible driver, not a reckless driver. Some teenagers nowadays, however, take the risk to drive down the road thinking that police officers won’t stop everyone they see driving down the road. But what if accidents happen and they find out you don’t have a license? You will surely be at fault when this is the case and you have to pay the price for bending the law.

Driving under the influence

There is always a strict enforcement when it comes to driving under the influence. Remember that alcohol can make you feel dizzy at some point no matter how little or how much you have taken in from a friend’s party. Drunk driving, take note, is one of the most dangerous driving habits all over the world. If you have been drinking and partying, it is safest to stay on that place up until you are sober and more than ready to drive yourself and others home. You do not want getting caught out there and police officers enforcing a fine when they have caught you driving under the influence.

Driving as you wish when there are no signal lights

Signal lights or traffic lights are more likely to be spotted on busy streets. When you are in these areas, it follows that you must abide by the traffic rules. But what if you are in a spot where you cannot see any of this sign? Sometimes, it becomes your license to drive as you wish without thinking that there can be someone else out there driving on the same road as you. You have to take extra care when driving whether you are heading a busy street or not.

What you can do

The last thing anyone wants is to put the life of someone else at risk but if you continue to do the bad driving habits mentioned above then there is always a chance you will meet accidents down the road. Remember that there is a price to pay for your negligence. In order to make sure that you are avoiding all these things from happening, it is best to put yourself in the shoes of others. Think of what you will feel when someone accidentally hits you and your car on the road due to the following reasons mentioned herein. We bet you will definitely get mad about it.

You know you can avoid all these bad driving habits – it’s perhaps time for you to take up a course on defensive driving in Malden.

Simple Driving Hacks That Will Save You A Lot Of Fuel

One of the expenses that come with your purchase and usage of a car is fuel. Depending on how long you have driven your car or how often it undergoes maintenance, your fuel expenses can really go up. The good news is there are driving hacks that can actually save you a lot of fuel in the long run.

Never slam on your car’s acceleration

Some drivers may have the habit of speeding down the road as if slamming on their brake pads and increasing their car’s acceleration. It has to be remembered that one of the basics that were taught when you enrolled in a driving school is to make sure that braking and acceleration should be done smoothly. This is not just because you want to be safe on the road at all times but also it is because it will save you much in terms of fuel consumption.  Accelerating sharply, and braking heavily will result to more fuel consumption because your car consumes more energy in these cases.

Cruise control is important

This is especially so when you are driving on a highway. It is tempting to speed up when you are in open road sections but if you want to save on fuel, it is imperative to follow speed limits and to exercise cruise control on an open road section. Cruise control will mean decreasing engine speed which will definitely save you a lot in fuel expenses.

Drive to your car service center for regular maintenance services

If you love driving down the road and travelling with friends and loved ones then you must also drive your way to a car care center for every 4,500 miles you have traveled. During this time, oil as well as oil filter should be replaced. Air filters and plugs must also be replaced by this time. This may mean additional expense on your part but it will save you on fuel in the long run. Add to that, you can save on maintenance services by having it done on time. If you will not follow this routine, you will end up spending more especially because there is a chance your car engine will fail without regular maintenance.

Use air conditioning only when necessary

Many times, you may be so fascinated with turning the air conditioner on even when it is cold outside. Of course, it is true that you want comfort but don’t you think you can drive and save fuel by turning your air conditioning system off when it is not too hot down the road? Remember that 15% of your fuel consumption increases when your air conditioner is turned on. Turning it off will mean that you can save an estimate of one gallon of gas for every 100 miles that you travel.

Make sure you know where you are heading to when using your car

There are instances when you might have to drive to a location that is new to you. When this is the case, you should have your map ready. You must also plan your route accordingly to save on fuel especially if you are driving during the winter months when you cannot take your usual routes because of piles of snow possibly blocking the road. Taking all your errands with you to a single trip will do you a lot of help.

Drive less when it is raining

The road is wet by this time and it can be a cause of accident. Add to this, water resistance is higher on the road during rainy days. This will mean having to spend more on fuel.

It is always important to follow these simple driving hacks if you want to save on fuel. For more driving hacks, simply sign up at the best driving school in Malden to learn from the best driving instructors!

Braking Tips That Will Make You A Safer Driver

Keeping yourself and everyone else safe on the road requires conscious effort on your part, especially if you are driving. You can actually minimize accidents by being the safe driver that you should be. One of the most important things to consider in this regard is to make sure you use your brakes properly. Here are braking tips that will make you a safer driver.

Be very light on the brake pedal

Stepping on your brake pedal in this manner will give you a lot of benefits. First, it will give you a space ahead of other drivers. Second, this will mean that you can prevent other drivers from hitting the back of your car. Last but not the least – this will give your car better gas mileage and will reduce the wear and tear on your brakes.

Remember that a sudden brake will make your vehicle lose its balance. This will send more weight to the front part which will also cause not just objects but also passengers to suddenly move forward. This can also cause skidding on your front wheels which can keep your vehicle off track. Hard braking may be done but only during emergency cases.

Brake only when necessary at higher speed roads

In case you are driving on the rod where faster speeds are allowed, there is lesser chance that other drivers will see your brake lights. Since traffic is moving faster, you are only given a lesser time to stop. You can slow down by letting off the gas pedal.

Release the gas pedal seconds before braking

This will help slow down your vehicle and will only require less pressure on the brake. Doing this will mean a smoother transition on the road and will also result to safe braking. Once you have seen any red light or you have seen a vehicle stopped around a block ahead, you should start releasing your gas pedal. When you have done this, you no longer need to push too hard on the brakes once the light turns green. This will keep you and others in front and behind you safer on the road.

You should brake early

Braking early will give other drivers a warning sign since they will be able to see your brake lights. This becomes a cycle which means that other drivers will also brake early to prevent them from getting too close to the back of your car. This prevents sudden stopping which is a common cause of accidents on the road.

Always pump your brakes

Pumping your brakes is a common practice for threshold braking. Even when you have practiced braking early, it will also be good to slightly pump your brakes several times since this will flash your brake lights which will then slow down the drivers behind you.

Keep a steady pressure when braking

One of the indications that you are a safe driver is that you practice good, steady pressure when braking. You have to remember that good braking techniques vary from one situation to another. When you are driving downhill, you will have to push harder and stop sooner. When you are moving on a tighter curve, there is a need to put more pressure on the brakes.

Leave plenty of room to swerve when braking behind a stopped vehicle

When you have seen a stopped vehicle in front of you, it will be good to live more room when braking to allow you to swerve. Make sure that you can still move quickly yet safely in case of these emergencies just so to prevent you from hitting the vehicle in front.

As you have seen earlier, good braking techniques will keep you and others safe on the road. If you want to learn braking techniques in the best way possible, you can attend an advance driving school in Malden.

How To Deal With Road Rage As A Beginner Driver

Road rage is something that happens all the time. You may be driving while listening to your favorite song when suddenly a car out of nowhere roars past and as if it is nothing at all, the driver swerves promptly cutting you off. The most annoying thing is that the driver of the vehicle does this act as if he is oblivious of his immediate environment.

Still, you may have come to a gentle halt when all of sudden a driver starts blaring horn behind you. It even gets worse when you check your rear view mirror. So how do you exactly deal with road rage as a beginner driver? These tips will show you how to handle the unexpected and stay safe on the road.

Learn to manage your emotions

It is very easy to get upset or angry. Yes! You may end up hurling a few curse words in the air or being tempted to step on the pedal and cut off your new road enemy just give him a test of his medicine. It is said that holding onto anger is like holding a very hot coal with the sole intent of throwing it to your enemy. The longer you hold the more you get hurt.

Therefore, the best way to handle road rage incidences is learning to manage your emotions. The guy who may have cut you off will be long gone by the time you start swearing. He will not even hear a word. So do not let your anger ruin your day, distract you when you are driving or make you do something that will cost you.

Dealing with anger

First and foremost, take a deep breath and gently release it. Repeat this for several minutes as you divert your attention to the apple of your eye. Now imagine that he or she has just called you and is desperately in need of your help and you are the only option in terms of aid. Think of how you would be driving if that happened to be the case.

Now put the driver who just made you mad into the same situation. There you go! At first, you may mind may be a little rebellious to this reasoning. However, you will soon figure that the person is possibly driving recklessly on the road because he is in a predicament. Though there is no clear way to ascertain it, it could actually be the case. This will help you manage the anger.

Stay calm

Taking deep breaths really helps in this case. Once you have a firm grip of your emotions, you can try to focus on something else preferably something that you like to do. You can also look forward to exciting things you will be doing during the day just to lighten the mood. By doing so, you will be changing your thought pattern and slowly getting rid of your anger.

As you let go of the anger, you will be calmer and you will have your attention on the road. The possibilities of taking an action that could lead to more acts of violence will be dimmer and you will be on the safer side.

As a beginner driver, there will be a lot to distract you on the road. Road rage is one of the common things that you will experience. Therefore, keep in mind that it does not just happen to you alone. It also happens to other people who have emotions just as much as you do. You can learn to manage your emotions. You can also go to an advanced driving school in Malden so that you can learn better driving techniques to keep yourself safe on the road.

Amazing Apps That Will Keep You From Texting When Driving

Most people know that it is really dangerous to text while driving yet they still do it. Where could the problem be? Some do it out of sheer reflex while others out of curiosity. Stealing a glance at your phone to answer a text can cost you dearly. Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of fatal road accidents and numerous injuries. Texting while driving not only puts your life in danger, but also endangers the life of every other person on the road. To avoid this bad habit, here is a list of amazing apps that will help you stay focused when you take the wheel.

DriveSafe.ly

This amazing app reads any incoming texts, emails and calls aloud. Thus, it eliminates the need to reach down for your phone when there is an incoming call or message, which may take your eyes off the road for a split second. That split second can cost you a lot if you are driving without the app. Thanks to the app, you no longer have to worry about phone distractions. The best part is that it responds to all your recipients automatically. You can go about conversations hands-free.

AT&T DriveMode

DriveMode is an app that limits certain feature on your phone. It does so by automatically sending preset replies to your recipients notifying them that you are driving. Once you launch the app, it proceeds to silence calls, emails and texts. Thus, you can hardly get distracted while driving. Most importantly, the app blocks you from reading or typing anything on your device. There is absolutely no room for distraction. It only allows you to dial 911 or make a maximum of 5 calls when driving thus guaranteeing safety.

Textecution

This app will definitely amaze you. It goes a long way just to make sure that you do not mess at all on the road. How so? Well, it simply uses GPS to gauge the speed of your vehicle and if you are driving at 15mph for instance, it will totally disable texting. Therefore, you will not be able to receive any incoming texts or respond to one.

However, if you are driving at a speed lower than 10mph, you can unlock the messages and respond to them. What happens if you are in a train, which does more than 15mph? Well, if you have the app installed in your phone, you would have to request for permission from the admin. The admin will override the settings allowing you to use your phone.

Text-STAR

This app is more or less like a personal assistant. It acts as a partial auto-text responder so that when you get a message, your eyes will still be on the road. Just like Textecution, it is also highly sensitive to motion and will completely disable texts if you are driving over 10mph. The best part about the app is that it easily allows you to preset the best reply texts in advance if you are certain that you are going to be preoccupied at a later time.

You no longer have to worry about distractions even as a beginner driver who has started driving lessons in Malden. It is important to take precautions to avoid causing harm to yourself and other people when driving. These apps simply ensure that your eyes are on the road all the time. Texting can be quite addictive especially if you like conversing via your mobile device. So if you know that you have the habit of texting when driving, get any of these apps and you will able to respond to a number of texts without exposing yourself to harm.

How To Prepare Your Car Before A Hurricane

When you have discovered that you are in a path of an impending hurricane, there are a few things you will have to do. Basically, you will need to prioritize your family’s safety. Of course, also included in your to-do-list is securing your property. Since you may be expecting to leave home at times like this, you will also need to prepare your car before the natural disaster comes. Here is what you should do in this regard:

Check all car bulbs

Make sure that every auto bulb is fully functional. Bulbs will include anything from your headlamps, brake lights and indicators to internal lighting and door ajar lights. You have to check engine lights as well as parking brake lights too. Replace any bulb that is not working properly to ensure you will be safe on the road in case the situation will require you to use your car when the storm comes.

Check on your car’s various fluid levels

Replenish them whenever necessary. There are different types of fluid that make your car fully operational. This will include engine oil, brake fluid, windshield wiper fluid, power steering fluid and coolant. This will also include the gas that goes into your gas tank. Make sure that you have topped off your gas tank and if you have a portable fuel can, make sure that one is filled with fluid as well. You have to make sure all these fluids have been filled exactly to the required level before the hurricane comes.

Checking on tire pressure matters as well

There may come a time during the storm when you will be forced to leave your home to go to higher grounds that flood or water cannot reach. In this case, you may be required to use your vehicle. The last thing you want is to discover that your tires do not have the exact pressure it needs to help you reach your destination. In this regard, you have to make sure all four tires including the spare tire have enough tire pressure. Make sure that you also have your tools ready in case you need to replace tires along the way.

Make sure that the windshield wipers are working

If not, you should replace them right away. Remember that the windshield wipers will help you see clearly on the road in case you need to move to another place during the storm. Make sure the wipers can move a large amount of water just enough to provide the visibility you need when driving in these situations.

You should be prepared with emergency tools

Emergency tools will include reflective warning triangles which you can make use of in case you will need to park your car on the road before or even during the storm. You can purchase emergency kits that include more than enough triangles to help warn other drivers that your car is parked on a certain side of the road. Position each triangle accordingly preferably one warning triangle 10 feet away from the bumper on the driver’s side. The other triangles should be placed a hundred feet away and 300 feet away from your car.

Remember to remove any unnecessary accessories on the car

They can be hazards to your safety especially when the wind starts to blow hard during the storm. Accessories will include anything from the bike rack, an extra antenna or any other temporary items found outside your car.

Disaster preparedness is very important when you know that hurricane is about to strike your location. Being prepared also means that you should know how to drive in adverse situations. For example, you can attend a defensive driving school in Malden to learn critical skills that can help you survive while driving during an impending hurricane.