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15 Things You Should Never Do to Your Automatic & Manual Car

Team AckoJan 17, 2024

A car can be more than just a machine for some people. It might be as important as a member of their family. Hence, insuring the vehicle with the right car insurance plan and taking proper care of it is essential. Irrespective of the emotion you have for your car, there are certain things that you should never do to your automatic & manual car. In this article, we have listed 15 things you should never do to a car.




List Of Things To Never Do With Your Car:

The life of a car depends upon how the driver drives it. Being too sloppy or too harsh on your car while driving will reduce its life by a few years. Moreover, you will have to invest in maintaining the car more frequently. Here is a list of things you should never do to your car.

  1. Never use two feet when driving an automatic car.

  2. Never engage the clutch continuously while driving.

  3. Never switch to ‘Park’ before an automatic car stops completely.

  4. Never drive an automatic car downhill while on neutral.

  5. Never shift gears without engaging the clutch.

  6. Never leave your manual car in gear when stationary.

  7. Never use wrong gears with wrong speeds.

  8. Never rest your hand on the gear stick.

  9. Never press on the break without engaging the clutch.

  10. Never forget to shift to the parking brake.

  11. Never accelerate for long before switching to the next gear.

  12. Never drive without warming the engine first.

  13. Never drive frequently with less fuel in the tank.

  14. Never switch to neutral while driving.

  15. Never shift to second gear immediately after the first.

Things You Should Not Do With Manual Transmission Vehicle:

Cars that have a manual gearbox, a gear stick with options to switch between different gears, and a clutch pedal are called manual transmission cars. Here is a list of things you should never do in a manual transmission vehicle:

Never Engage The Clutch Continuously While Driving

The clutch is supposed to be engaged only when you are pressing the brake or changing gears. If you keep it pressed halfway while driving, it will lead to extra friction and the clutch will wear out sooner. It will not only reduce the durability but also increase your car’s maintenance cost.

Never Shift Gears Without Engaging The Clutch

Not engaging the clutch while shifting gears can be harmful to the transmission of your car. Understand that the main function of a clutch is to control the contact between transmission and engine. The car can run into a series of jerky motions as it struggles to find the right balance between gears and engine’s speed.

Never Leave Your Manual Car In Gear When Stationary

Keeping the car in gear while stationary implies that the clutch is also engaged. Keeping the clutch engaged for longer durations wears it out sooner. As mentioned earlier, this will increase the maintenance cost for your car.

Never Use Wrong Gears With Wrong Speeds

Using wrong gears at wrong speeds visibly stresses the car. The car will lag and you will hear the noise that is not natural for a car to make. This sound is caused by the strain on the transmission and the engine of your car. Continuously driving with mismatched gears is not good for the car in the long run.

Never Press On The Break Without Engaging The Clutch

While some car drivers prefer to hit the brake without engaging the clutch, it is not advised for people who have recently learned driving. You need to have more control over the vehicle and expertise to handle it in such a situation. Your car will start jolting if you brake without holding down the clutch.

Never Accelerate For Long Before Switching To The Next Gear

Accelerating at the lower gear will launch your car at a higher speed, however, it can only reach a certain high point. Driving with this setting will put a strain on your gearbox and this habit will damage it faster. At the same time, you will also end up using more fuel than required. Thus, switch to the next gear when the speed increases. This is one of the most important things you should never do in a manual car.

Never Switch To Neutral While Driving

It is widely believed that switching the car to the neutral mode while driving will save fuel. However, it is dangerous to do so. Switching to neutral will reduce the control you have over the car. This can prove to be life-threatening in a risky situation.

Never Shift To Second Gear Immediately After The First

It is advised by experts that a person should switch to the second gear only when the car is running between 5 to 15mph. This does not imply that you attack the accelerator on starting the car. Switching to the second gear immediately will reduce the expected life of the gearbox.

Also, Read: Car Essentials & Functional Vehicle Accessories

Things You Should Not Do With Automatic Transmission Vehicle:

A car that automatically adjusts the gears according to its speed and that does not have a clutch pedal is called an automatic transmission car. Such cars have their own set of advantages over manual cars, for example – differently-abled people may drive the car as less manual work is required while driving an automatic car. Here is a list of things you should never do in an automatic transmission vehicle:

Never Use Two Feet When Driving An Automatic Car

Using both feet to drive an automatic car can lead to a crash if you happen to press both pedals simultaneously. It can also stress out the transmission fluid, torque converter, and brake fluid of the car. If you wish to drive an automatic car with both feet, you should buy a car that automatically engages the braking system when both pedals are pressed at the same time.

Never Switch To ‘Park’ Before An Automatic Car Stops Completely

Some new cars may not even allow the driver to shift to the park mode before the car stops moving. However, it might be possible that you hurriedly switch to park. This can harm the transmission of your car. The parking gear is not meant to work instead of brakes, it is meant to hold the car still while it is parked. The wheels won’t move when you switch to park. Thus, never switch to ‘Park’ before an automatic car stops completely.

Never Drive An Automatic Car Downhill While On Neutral

Switching to neutral stops the flow of fuel to the engine, this reduces your control on the car as you cannot use the engine’s gears for slowing down. You can only rely on the main breaks in this situation putting more strain on them. Reduced control over the car can prove to be dangerous especially in a situation where you quickly need to react while going down a slope.

Never Rest Your Hand On The Gear Stick

Two things can happen when you have the habit of resting your hand on the gear stick – early wear & tear and endangered safety. When your hand is rested upon the gear stick, it puts pressure on the shifter rail. The shifter rail then pushes the synchronizers. They touch the gears and friction is created. This friction can cause premature damage to the teeth of the gear.

Never Forget To Shift To The Parking Brake

The parking brake of your car helps it remain steady while in a parking space. If the parking brake is not applied, the transmission of the car is not locked and there are high chances that the car may roll away. This can be a big safety concern for everyone around the car. It is one of the most important things you should never do in an automatic car.

Never Drive Without Warming The Engine

It is advised that a car should be warmed at least for 30 seconds before driving, especially in a cold climate. This is because fuel will not work to its full efficiency until it is in a good liquid state. In winter, give your car a little time to “wake up” before you put her in action.

Never Drive Frequently With Less Fuel In The Tank

Contaminants or foreign particles can settle at the bottom of a fuel tank of your car over a period of time. When you drive on low fuel, these contaminants can enter the engine. This is harmful to your car in the long run.

Also, read: Vehicle Scrappage Policy in India

Frequently Asked Questions:

Will there be changes in my license if I start driving an automatic car?


No, you will be allowed to drive a class of vehicle that you already have a driving license for. Class of vehicles are not dependent on your vehicle being automatic or manual. It is mostly about private vehicles and commercial vehicles. Switching between these two may require a separate license.

What is meant by “Prindle”?


Prindle refers to PRNDL that is a short form for Park, Reverse, Neutral, Drive and Low. These are the settings on a gear stick of an automatic car.

What does the gearbox do?


The gearbox controls the torque of a vehicle according to its speed. Torque is a force that helps the wheels of a car move in forward or backward motion.

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