manual transmissions

Apparently, driving stick is not as easy as it looks. Just ask an unidentified driver from Salem, Ore. According to a Feb. 2 report, the 23-year-old male wasn’t quite able to master the skill. A fateful attempt to learn culminated in the young man’s car jumping a curb, hitting a woman, and crashing into a laundry mat. Although the woman sustained injuries, she will be okay, continues. Police charged the offending male with careless driving.

It’s safe to assume you don’t want to make headlines for similar reasons. For a safer — and much less eventful (in a good way) — experience learning to drive vehicles with manual transmissions, keep the following in mind.

Your Patience Will Pay Off
It’s always best to start as if you are learning to drive for the very first time, even if you have been driving cars with automatic transmissions for a very long time. Select a relatively empty parking lot with a lot of open space to start. Make certain the area is flat (if you stall in cars with manual transmissions, the car may roll uphill or downhill), and ask someone well-versed in stick shifts to accompany you.

These steps may seem overly cautious at first, but it is worth your time. First, since automatic or auto transmissions outnumber manual transmissions by 10 to one, vehicles with stick shifts generally sell for less. What’s more, if you are driving an automatic and the transmission fails, you may be able to take control and avoid a dangerous collision or accident.

Be Gentle With The Clutch
Transmissions repair shops, transmission repair services, and/or retailers will likely be able to help you replace a clutch when necessary. Before spending $2,000 on a new clutch and spending even more on labor at one of the 701,100 U.S. auto mechanics, know how to learn to drive stick gradually and without making costly repairs. “Without giving the vehicle any gas, continue to release the clutch very slowly, and see if you can get the car creeping along,” recommends. If you can do this without stalling the car, you can begin driving with gas.

Don’t end up in the news thanks to your stick shift driving woes. Take it slow. Learn in a large, flat, and open area, and learn to ease on the clutch before applying more gas.

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