How and where you park can make a difference between a dented car and well-kept one. It can make a difference between heading to an important meeting in a car strewn with leaves and bird droppings or a nice shiny one. Where and how you park is also a safety concern for others and yourself. Here’s how to do it right while caring for your car.
Be considerate to other road users and pedestrians:-
When parking your car, the first thing you should check is whether it is safe and legal to park there. Check for no standing zones, no parking zones and day specific zones as parking in places where one is not allowed may lead to your car getting towed. Do not park too close to a gate, intersection, bus stop, fire hydrant, post box or taxi and rickshaw stands. One must also never park too close to another car at the risk of getting boxed in.
Parking under trees:-
Parking under a tree may seem sensible as it prevents your car from getting too hot in the summers, but stray objects like branches or coconuts might damage your car. Also, bird droppings can completely ruin your paint if not wiped clean soon. Some migratory birds like storks have acidic droppings that burn through your clear coat and into your paint leaving permanent damage. Check where you park and if possible never under a tree. In the monsoon, heavy winds and rain can also cause trees to fall resulting in complete destruction of your car.
How to apply the handbrake:-
Applying the handbrake is crucial although the correct procedure is very important. Many drivers simply throw the car into gear (or Park in an automatic) and rip the handbrake on. In this case, it is the transmission that usually takes up most of the load and not the handbrake.
Whenever you are parking a car, especially on a hill, park and stop safely. At this point your standard footbrake should be holding the car stationary, select neutral no matter whether the car has an automatic or manual transmission and then pull on the handbrake. The correct way to apply the handbrake is to push the button in as you are pulling it on. Avoid the clicking sound that comes due to not pressing the button. Once the handbrake is on, pull again firmly to hear one click and let your foot slowly off the footbrake. Now the parking brake holds the car’s weight. The driver can not select 1st gear in a manual or Park mode in an automatic for added security. On a hill, always put the car in gear.
Always remember to choose a space with a wall on one side or at the end of a cue of parked cars so as to minimize the chances of your car getting damaged. Also, always remember to park your car only inside a designated spot if parking in a parking lot so as not to inconvenience other users.