Driver training courses tend to focus on how to do a pre-trip vehicle inspection along with what to do once the car is moving. Yet starting your car is also a critical action that impacts the safety and longevity of your vehicle. Knowing what to avoid doing when you start your car gives you a smooth beginning point for getting to and from your destination with ease while protecting one of your most valuable assets.
Start the Car Twice
Having a car with a quiet engine is typically a good thing. However, the one drawback is that you might not always hear your car start. Being absentminded might cause you to turn the key twice, which could result in your car making a loud noise. While doing this on a rare occasion won’t usually create lasting damage, it can lead to a damaged flywheel or starter.
Try to pay attention as you start your car so you only do it once. If you routinely need to turn the ignition twice to get the car to start, this could be a warning sign that your car has a mechanical defect. Scheduling an inspection can help you make sure your car is starting properly.
Ignore the Dashboard
Modern cars have an array of features that can help you identify common safety issues before you get stranded on the side of the road. While you might be busy putting on your seat belt and thinking about your route, you should also take a moment to see what pops up on the dash.
Dashboard warning lights can let you know if it’s time for an oil change or if the tire pressure is low. Make sure to follow up on any early warning lights to keep your car in optimum condition. If you see any that signify a major issue, such as a blinker light being out, take care of the problem before driving any further.
Forget to Adjust the Mirrors & Seat
If you share a vehicle, it’s possible the previous driver made changes to the seat and mirrors that could impact your drive. Mirrors can also get knocked out of place accidentally, and being unable to have a clear view of other cars when you need to make a lane change is unsafe. Moving your seat forward or backward and adjusting the mirrors only takes a few seconds, but it greatly increases your safety on the road.
Walk Away while It Warms Up
Many cars offer a remote start option that makes it possible to warm or cool the interior before you climb inside. But even with the doors locked, things could go wrong. Ideally, you should stay near the car during remote starts, which allows you to listen for problems with the engine. Staying beside or in your car can also prevent your car from being stolen and requiring you to file a claim with your auto insurance provider.
No matter how diligent you are about safety, you still need insurance coverage in case of an accident or theft. If you’re looking for reliable auto insurance, turn to Altra Insurance Services. We’re also a leading provider of affordable motorcycle insurance. San Diego vehicle owners can call (619) 404-6311 today for a complimentary quote on insurance coverage.