Common driving habits that damage your car

Driving habits that are bad for your car

Almost every single motorist likes to think that they’re a good driver, yet deep down know that they’re guilty of at least one or two bad driving habits. While these may often be innocuous - not checking all your mirrors when pulling away or leaving food and rubbish in your car for example - there are some more serious driving habits that are bad for your car. These can lead to excessive wear and tear on your vehicle, inefficient fuel consumption and, worst of all, astronomical repair and maintenance costs.

Take the time to review some of the most common driving habits that could be causing damage to your car, and try to eliminate them from your day-to-day motoring.

1. Holding onto the gearstick

There’s nothing quite like watching a Hollywood car chase and seeing the hero change up the gears as they navigate the busy streets at breathtaking speed. So you’d be forgiven for trying to mimic your on-screen heroes by resting your hand on the gearstick. In reality, making a habit of this can cause undue damage to the selector fork, leading to premature wear.

2. Riding the clutch

Another common driving habit that would get you a stern rebuke from any driving instructor is riding the clutch. Riding the clutch is when you fail to properly remove your foot from the pedal following a gear change. Such an action can lead to excessive wear on the clutch and, as anyone that has had to have a clutch replaced in the past will know, such repair work seldom comes cheap.

3. Excessive revving

Driving in the cold weather is something of a chore for all motorists, with the need to adequately clear your windows of ice, frost, and mist, as well as making sure your tyres are in a suitable condition. It can also lead to excessive revving of the vehicle in an effort to ‘warm up’ the engine before heading off on a journey. In reality, modern engines are often fuel-injection, meaning they’re ready to drive from the off, with over-revving simply adding to the wear and tear of the vehicle.

4. Ignoring warning lights

Warning lights are fitted to a vehicle for a reason. Regardless of what they indicate, they should never be ignored or put off until a later time. It may well be something minor like a loss of windscreen washer fluid, or something major like a catastrophic engine failure. Either way, the best course of action is to remedy the indicated issue as soon as possible to avoid costly repair bills further down the line.

5. Not slowing down for speed bumps

It’s a poorly kept secret that ‘driving between’ speed bumps in the road is a great means of maintaining your speed and ignoring requests to slow. However, not only is this reckless (speed bumps are located in highly pedestrianised areas), but can lead to severe damage to your car. Hitting a speed bump - as well as other obstructions such as potholes - at speed can in fact cause extensive damage to the underside of your car and suspension, leading to expensive repairs.

For more information on better motoring, contact the team at Carwise in Dunstable, Harlow, and Maidstone today. Our experts will be able to provide you with advice as well as showcase our range of high-quality used cars. Get in touch today for more details.