You would be able to notice a difference between an expert driver and a beginner. The differences are quite small but noticeable. Because of his experience, an expert driver treats and drives the car differently. Beginners might not understand the reasoning behind what the expert driver is doing at first but as they gain some experience in driving, they will be able to understand them. Here, are 10 driving habits that differentiate expert drivers from beginners.
Not Riding the Clutch
Riding the clutch means keeping your foot on the clutch pedal while driving. The clutch should either be fully pressed or fully disengaged. Riding the clutch causes excessive wear and tear of the clutch as well as the gearbox. Beginners often use the clutch as a footrest but that is a very wrong practice. Some automobile manufacturers offer a dedicated dead pedal for your left foot to rest on. There are also some after-market options if your car does not come with a dead pedal.
Using high-beams only if necessary
Most people in our country drive with high beams on because the visibility increases if you are using the high beams. However, they do not think that their high beams will be blinding the oncoming traffic which can be very dangerous for them as well as for you. An expert on the other hand does consider this whenever he spots a vehicle coming from the opposite side, he will shift to low beam.
An experienced driver would always brake gradually. Slamming on the brakes at the last moment leads to excessive wear and tear. If you see that there is a traffic light ahead and it is going to get red then an expert would stop accelerating and start applying brakes gradually. This will also help in increasing the life of your brake pads.
Always use rearview mirrors
An expert driver would always keep checking his surroundings because it is always a good thing to be aware of what other vehicles around are doing and where they are. Also, he would adjust the mirrors according to him. Instead of doing this, many people in our country shut the outside rearview mirrors, thinking that someone will hit them and they will have to get them repaired.
Not using the gear lever as armrest
Many people have this habit of keeping their hands on the gear lever while driving. If you keep applying force on the gear lever, it can damage the transmission in the long run. Also, you should always keep both of your hands on the steering wheel so that you have full control of your steering wheel. An expert would only keep his hand on the gear lever while changing the gear and then put his hand back on the steering wheel.
Let the engine warm up and cool down
Many people consider this a myth but an expert driver would let the engine warm up. What this means is that you should not rev the engine aggressively and the RPMs should stay below 2,000 when you cold start the car. You should let the engine reach its optimum temperature. The reason behind this is that the engine is cold and the engine oil also gets settled when the vehicle is not in use. So, it takes some time for the oil to heat up and start lubricating the whole engine. Once the oil heats, its lubrication properties also increase so it can do a better job at lubricating the engine. If your vehicle comes with a turbocharged engine then it is necessary that you let the turbocharger cool down before you park the car. Just keep the RPMs low when you are about to reach your destination. This will let engine oil flow efficiently and the turbocharger will also cool down.
Don’t rev the engine unnecessarily
An experienced driver knows his car and will not rev the engine unnecessarily. When the engine is running on higher revs it is under more pressure and will be burning more fuel. Revving the engine also reduces the life of the engine components.
Not using fast lane of highway unnecessarily
The rightmost lane on the highways is for overtaking, but many people do not follow the rules and choose any lane and just travel at their own speed. This is not a good practice as the person coming from behind will get irritated. Instead, if you are travelling at a constant speed then you should stay in the middle lane. This is what an expert driver would do. Also, he would follow the speed limits.
Know your car
This basically means that an expert driver is aware of the dimensions of the car. An expert driver would know whether his vehicle will fit in parking or whether his car would scrape its underbelly when going over a huge speed breaker, what should do to ensure that the underbelly does not scrape. He knows what all the controls do and what all the warning light means. Also, every driver should know how to fix a puncture.