5 Driving Tips to Keep Your Manual Transmission Humming (Updated)

April 5th, 2019 by

Editor’s note: This post was originally published on 8/18/16 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehension.

The stick-shift car is alive and well.

Even though the majority of drivers eschew having to manually shift gears while behind the wheel, there are enough that enjoy driving a manual to keep them in production.

If you prefer doing the gear-shifting work, follow these tips to keep your engine in tip-top shape.

1. Don’t rest
Your hands, that is, on the gear shift.

Always keep your hands on the wheel, in the 10-and-2 positions.

This is the best way to ensure that you can respond to the traffic in front of you and be ready to safely steer the car.

2. Don’t ride the clutch
If you keep your left foot touching the clutch while you drive, you could be putting your vehicle at risk.

Over time, the pressure you apply to the clutch will cause it to burn out. If you want your clutch to last as long as possible, take your foot off of it as soon as you change gears.

3. Don’t forget the brake
If you’re going up a hill and want to stop the car from rolling backwards, don’t rely on the brake only.

Use the emergency brake instead.

If you’re constantly depending on the brake, it’ll wear out quicker than if you used the emergency brake to assist you.

4. Don’t coast
When the vehicle is in neutral and you decide to coast, you’re probably hoping to save on gas.

While this is true, it’s a dangerous move.

When the car is neutral, you’re not in control. So if a person, animal or object suddenly appears in front of your car, you’ll have less time to respond.

Never coast down a hill in neutral either, as you’ll have to press on the brake with a lot of pressure to stop, which could overheat the brake.

5. Don’t spike the RPMs
When the RPMs are low, you shouldn’t throttle the gas to gain speed quickly.

You’ll risk stressing the engine. If you want to accelerate, shift gears instead, and you’ll get momentum.

Keep these tips in mind as you drive your manual transmission, and you’ll help the vehicle last long and your drive will be smooth.

For more information about driving your manual vehicle – or to try one out for the first time – contact the People Pleasin’ sales staff at one of our Serra Auto Park locations.

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