Everybody can drive a car, especially an automatic one. It is as simple as turning the engine on and pressing the gas pedal with your foot. Moreover, everybody can drive fast. But not everybody can do it well. A lot of people don’t even know what that means.
It starts with taking proper care of your vehicle and following the rules. And it doesn’t stop there. Once you’ve done that, you should look into getting the most information you can, both on cars and the automotive and transportation industry as a whole.
The most important thing about being a good driver is taking care of your car. It doesn’t matter how skilled you are or how many rules you know. If your car breaks down, it could cause serious consequences for both yourself and others.
Thus, if you see that the breaks are not working well, take them to the shop and have them fixed. If there’s a strange liquid leaking out from the bottom of your hood, maybe it’s time to replace the timing belt in your Subaru or Toyota.
Other basic car maintenance issues to be aware of are:
- Checking your tire pressures at least once a month.
- Making sure all lights are properly working. It includes headlights, turn signals, parking lights, and brake lights.
- Having the oil and oil filter changed every 5,000 kilometers.
- Replacing the air filter when needed.
- Inspecting windshield wipers and wiper blades and replacing them when damaged.
- Making sure the battery is not corroded and is working well.
These simple, fundamental checks will ensure your car is functioning in its most optimal condition.
Rules and Regulations
You shouldn’t drive over the mandated speed limit. You should always signal before turning. If your driver’s license is expired, you should change it before getting into a car again. You need to stop when the traffic light is red and continue when it is green. These are four rules everybody knows. There are plenty of others.
Of course, it’s essential both to know these rules and to follow them. As with car maintenance, they are put in place for our protection and the protection of others, including pedestrians, cyclists, and other drivers.
Still, the most crucial rule, the one a lot of people often fail to follow, is common sense. If you are on a dark road in a dangerous neighborhood in the middle of the night, there is nobody around, and the light is red, it’s probably in your best interest to continue. Even if you can handle your alcohol well, if you plan a night out with the boys, you should leave the keys at home or give them to somebody else. Why take unnecessary risks? Why put yourself in jeopardy for no valid reason?
More often than not, common sense is what prevents accidents from happening and avoid disasters. The rules are there as your guide. They are there to protect you. But use your brain as well. There’s a reason why you have one.
The Power of Information
Another aspect of being a good driver is keeping yourself up to date on the most recent car and driver trends. Perhaps you’ve heard about Vision Zero, the concept of zero accidents, zero contamination, zero security breaches, and zero mistakes. You might know a bit about electric cars, environmental policies, car industry labor disputes, and hybrids.
The information is there not only for you to become more knowledgeable about the industry but also as an usher to change your own life. You could look into replacing your gas-guzzling vehicle with one more friendly to our environment. You could dispose of it altogether and instead buy an electric bike.
Another option is to help your workplace establish car-pooling and other measures to reduce congestion and CO2 emissions. If you traveled overseas or have experience driving abroad, you could teach locals in your community about the differences in driving styles, rules, and regulations in other countries.
In essence, the information is out there for you to enhance your driving ability. It pertains not only to the physical aspect of driving a car but also in the sense of becoming a more conscientious citizen striving to improve the society and circumstances in which you live.
A good driver knows when and how to take care of his car. He engages in routine maintenance for this vehicle to always be in tip-top shape. He also knows the rules and regulations, follows them, and uses common sense. Finally, he is willing to learn. He knows what’s happening in the automotive industry and is flexible to change.
As such, he pays the way forward for future generations to become good drivers themselves.