A myth is an idea that is not true in actual sense. People believe in myths because they have been hearing them for a very long time. It usually does not cross one’s mind to make use of all the information available to find out if a myth is true. People believe in all kinds of myths like a bolt of lightning never strikes the same place twice, bulls get agitated with red colour, we humans use only 10% of our brain, or that a coconut would never fall on a parked car. In this article, we will focus on car myths you should stop believing because they are not true!

15 Car Myths You Should Stop Believing - Acko

Car Myths That Are Not True:

Some people believe the following myths, however, they have no legitimate reason for doing so. These are mostly the things that have been telling each other as advice. Take a look:

1. Automatic Cars Are Less Fuel-efficient As Compared To Manual Gear Shift Ones:

The way automatic cars are made these days have eliminated the truth that they are less fuel-efficient than manual cars. Thanks to advancements in technology automatic cars of today have more forward gears than cars with manual transmission. This helps in a balanced fuel economy in both versions. The extra gears can help with creating more power at lower engine speed, this saves fuel and creates the balance.

2. Nitrogen Is Beneficial Only For Racing Cars And Not Regular Passenger Vehicles:

Nitrogen is indeed used to fill heavy-duty tyres of racing cars. This is because it is more advantageous to have nitrogen than air in such car tyres. However, this does not imply that normal passenger cars will not benefit from the same advantage. Pure nitrogen does not tend to leak out like air. This provides stable tyre pressure for longer durations. Your visits to fill up car tyres will be less when you have nitrogen in them.

3. Car’s Regular Maintenance Should Only Be Done At The Manufacturer’s Service Centres:

Indian car dealers provide offers like free warrant, or discount on servicing costs, etc. It is not necessary to keep visiting their special service centres after a certain point. It is probably one of the biggest car myths one should not believe. If you wish to put your car up for sale, you need to have proper receipts of prior maintenance services. This does not mean that the receipts should be from the manufacturer’s service centres. However, be wary of the terms and conditions for the warranty of your car. 

4. Horsepower Refers To The Speed of An Actual Horse:

This is one of the funny car myths that people believe. Horsepower is the capacity of a vehicle’s engine to do work. It can loosely mean the speed of a car. Horsepower does not mean the number of horses required to pull your car! Engine’s horsepower is measured with the help of a dynamometer. It calculates this value with torque and RPM (revolutions per minute) of a vehicle. More the horsepower more the speed. More the torque more is the strength.

5. Larger Cars Are Safer For Passengers:

Cars with more seating capacity are larger as compared to those that can carry a lesser number of passengers. The safety of the passengers depend upon the quality of material used while manufacturing it. It also depends upon the safety features present in the car. If a ‘large’ car is made up of low-quality material, the safety of the passengers will be compromised. On the other hand, if a small car is equipped with safety features, the passengers are less likely to get injured during an accident. Thus, the size of a car is not related to safety.

6. A Replacement Is Required When The Tyre Runs Over A Pointed Object:

This may not always be the case. If the object is stuck and the tyre pressure has not reduced, you may not have to get a replacement. Such a hole is usually plugged by the foreign object itself. You need to get it removed and repaired from a professional. You may not notice the object at all in case of a tubeless tyre. You may only need a replacement in the worst case when the object was large enough to damage the tyre beyond repair.

7. You Get Dense Fuel In The Morning With More Value For Money:

This myth is based on the principle of expansion and contraction of liquids due to a change in temperature. It would have been true that you receive less fuel during the day when the temperature is higher, if fuel storage tanks were not located underground. One of the reasons for underground storage tanks is, fuel should face minimum expansion or contraction due to temperature. The stored fuel is thus protected from such changes and may only be affected to a negligible level. You can refuel your car any time of the day without worrying about its density.

8. Letting The Car Idle Is Better For Fuel Economy Than Turning The Engine On And Off:

This is not true for modern-day cars. A car idling for a long time is bad for cars with carburettors that blend fuel and air to run the engine. Present generation cars do not have to spend additional fuel on keeping the ignition on. On the contrary, turning the engine off will help save fuel.

9. My Hatchback Will Run Like An SUV With Premium Fuel:

It is a myth that cars run better on premium fuel. If your car does not require such type of fuel, it will not run better on it. Read instructions related to the type of fuel that is best suited for your car in the owner’s manual. Because, even if premium fuel is more expensive it is not necessarily of superior quality. Premium fuel is not so premium after all!

10. I Can Check My Phone When On Cruise Control:

Cruise control is a feature that allows the driver to maintain a constant speed without applying acceleration or breaks. It is meant to provide comfort to the driver, especially during a long journey. Even if the speed of a vehicle remains constant on cruise control it does not imply that the driver is allowed to lose focus. It could lead to major consequences if the vehicle in front of you applies emergency brakes or someone decides to cross the road. Thus, it is not okay to check your phone or get distracted when on cruise control. Remember that this is one of those car myths that you should not believe at all.

Also,read: 10 Factors Which Determine Car Insurance Premium?

5 Used Car Myths That Are Not True:

Some myths about used cars are so common that it affects the decision of buyers. Here are a few of them:

1. The Resale Value Of A Used Car Will Be As Good As Nothing:

The resale value of a car does not only depend upon its manufacturing year. It also depends upon its current condition and maintenance schedule. Suppose you are to choose between a car that was manufactured 5 years back but is not maintained well enough and a car that was manufactured 7 years back but is in a very good condition. Always go for the one which was well maintained. Chances are that the owner went out of the way to keep it in top condition. There is a chance that you will receive higher resale value for such a vehicle.

2. Used Cars With Large Mileage Are Not Worth It:

Again a myth with no logical explanation. If a car has run long journeys, it is likely to be more reliable. Try not to associate more mileage with wear and tear. If the car is properly maintained and has covered a larger distance, chances are that you might not have to spend a lot of money for repairs either. Used cars with large mileage are worth it if they are in good condition.

3. Missing Maintenance History Means A Faulty Car:

You need to be the judge of the condition of a car if maintenance history is not available. If the car is in good condition and runs well, it might turn out to be a good deal for you. Try to gather information about the car from the manufacturer. Usually, the first few maintenance services are mandatory as it helps keep the warranty intact. Thus, a missing maintenance history does not necessarily mean a faulty car.

4. A Second-hand Car Will Need Frequent Maintenance:

If you make an informed choice while buying a used car, it will not burn a hole in your pocket now and then. When kept in good condition, a used vehicle can run smoothly with minimum hiccups. If you do not know much about cars, you should take an opinion from an expert in this field while buying a used car.

5. Buying A New Car Is An Investment. Buying An Old One Is A Liability:

A car is an asset that depreciates. This means the monetary value of a car decreases with time. Irrespective of a car being old or new, buying it is not an investment. The resale value of any car will always be less than what you paid at the time of purchase. Except maybe for vintage cars.

Also, read: Long-term Comprehensive Car Insurance Policy

Car Insurance Myths:

Here are a few car insurance myths that you should not believe:

  1. The price of a car insurance policy will be based on the colour of your car.
  2. A car insurance claim will be rejected if the car is damaged due to “Act of God” i.e. a natural calamity.
  3. Buying a basic cover is sufficient for small cars
  4. I do not need to buy a personal accident cover because I have health insurance.
  5. Buying car insurance is a time-consuming job

All these myths are as bizarre as blind bats, dogs’ mouths being cleaner than ours, or that our tongue has different sections for tasting different things. If you believed in them before, now you know better.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How often should I send my car for maintenance?

In India, you should consider getting your car serviced at least every season change. This will help you get it ready for challenging seasons like the rainy season.

Is it a good idea to drive a brand new car with a learner’s license?

This depends upon the person who would be accompanying you while driving the car. He/she should be able to guide you and help you learn the controls without causing damage to the car.

Are white cars cooler than black cars?

The laws of thermodynamics work on all colours. Since a car’s exterior is made up of metal, it will heat up irrespective of the colour. However, the rate at which it heats up is different for each colour. Dark-coloured cars trap heat faster than lighter colours. This is why people argue that black cars heat up more as compared to white cars.

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