Today is the era of automatic cars, meaning that the cars we see on the road are mostly driven by automatic transmissions instead of the conventional manual ones. As we all know, driving an automatic car is apparently much easier than what it takes to drive a manual car. But as each advantage brings with it a set of disadvantages, the automatic car proved to be no exception. Even with all the latest safety technologies at your disposal, the automatic cars can encircle you with some safety issues which you need to be aware of. But that doesn’t mean you have no way out to solve those issues. The test drivers at the Toyota dealer Mountain Home gave us all those necessary safety tips that can make the automatic cars really safe and a fun to drive.

All you have to do to stay safe on road while driving an automatic car is following these rules.

Engaging the P (Park) Gear

The first rule of safety in an automatic car is engaging the gear stick to the P (Park) mode only after your vehicle has come to a complete stop. The reason behind this rule is that, engaging the gear stick to P mode while the car is still moving, will damage the locking pin which is the most important component of the automatic car that locks up the automatic transmission. This pin helps stop the transmission from further rotation and hence do not allow the vehicle to move forward or backward.  

Applying ‘Neutral’ Gear at the Stop Lights

When it is an automatic car, the next thing to keep in mind is to keep the gear in D point when you are waiting at a stop light. This is suggested because in case you forget that you have placed the gear at N you might end up revving the engine unnecessarily when the light turns green, which will cost you more fuel.

Changing Gears While on the Move

It is a common practice among many drivers to change the gears while parking the vehicle or when it is still in motion. But driving experts at the Toyota Mountain Home say that switching the gears while the vehicle is still moving can damage the transmission of the vehicle. If it is required to shift the gear from D to R and the vice versa, it is necessary to wait till the vehicle stops completely.

When to Launch your Vehicle

In the terms of the automotive industry, ‘launching’ is referred to the action of accelerating your car directly from a standstill, which can be said to be synonymous to drag racing. While this practice is an amusing thing to the new drivers, launching an automatic car will end up wearing out the bands that protects your transmission.

The Bottom Line

Driving an automatic car although demands less driving skills, it is the way its transmission works that might restrict some driving habits you could have enjoyed otherwise while driving a mechanical car.