Are you new to driving a manual transmission?

Are you new to driving a manual transmission?

June 1, 2016

Most cars that are manufactured today are automatic, meaning all the driver needs to do is apply their foot to the gas or the break as needed to make the car go forward or slow down. The presence of a clutch and manual shifter adds to the complexity of driving a manual transmission vehicle. If you are looking to buy an older vehicle with a manual transmission, here a few tips to help you drive it successfully.

Start the car. After climbing into the driver’s seat and putting on your seatbelt, the next step is to start the car. In an automatic car, you can do this simply by turning the key. In a manual, you should have the clutch completely depressed with your left foot and the brake down as well to ensure the car will not roll if the handbrake is not up. This is what must take place first when driving a manual transmission vehicle.

Move the vehicle. Make sure the shifter is in first gear. Move your right foot from the brake pedal to gas pedal, but do not depress it yet. The trick to moving your vehicle forward without jolting or choking the engine is to get the timing right of pressing the gas with your right foot while gradually releasing the clutch with your left. Most people choke the engine a few times as they learn about driving a manual transmission vehicle, so do not be surprised if this happens to you as well.

Change gears. Once you are moving in first gear, press the gas pedal gently to increase your speed. The RPMs will increase until you shift to second gear. This is done by depressing the clutch again and taking your foot off the gas at the same time. Switch the gear stick from first to second and release the clutch while applying pressure to the gas pedal again. This process repeats as you pick up speed.

Stop the vehicle. When you want to stop, press the brake pedal and depress the clutch when the RPMs start to drop below about 2,000. The car will start to shudder if you fail to push in the clutch and will choke if you get to a stopped position without the clutch depressed. The best thing about driving a manual transmission vehicle is that you choose when the gears change, giving you full control over the vehicle.


Call Kimmer Transmission & Gear today at 303-693-1400 with any questions or to schedule an appointment.

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