Know Your Car

Know Your Car

In my previous article, I discussed about what to do after getting inside a car. Now let’s study about the driver’s seating position, and a few more things. 

Typically, we would want a very comfortable seating position. So, what we generally do is, we push the back support or the back bench of the seat behind and drive in a position which doesn’t give an accurate driving posture. So, let’s learn how to sit in the driving seat.

Position yourself correctly: Make sure you sit straight and that your buttocks and back are straight and completely squeezed into the seat. This helps in avoiding backaches, possible back injuries and maintaining awareness during long drives. This helps in improving your drive quality too.
Your seating position should be like the one shown in the above picture.

Adjusting Side View Mirrors: The side view mirrors should be adjusted in such a way, that the driver is able to see the last edge of the door of the car. This increases the visibility of the driver to check if there’s some object which is close to his car.

This is how your mirror’s visibility should be. Your car shouldn't be visible.

The seating and the mirror adjustments could be done when you switch on the engine and leave it idle for 15-20 seconds.

Now, after the adjustments, once the car is in motion, let’s understand how to get a better mileage and save the car’s spare parts from excessive wear and tear.

We generally switch on the AC of the car once the car is in motion. Well, it is very harmful for the engine and the compressor of the car.

Let’s understand, “When to turn on the AC and When to shift gears”

Once the car has run for around 5-10 mins, the AC of the car should be turned on. This is because when the car is parked and the engine is switched off, the engine oil and the other oils in the engine settle down and start to circulate only after 8-10 mins of the car running on the road. Switching on the AC after 5-10 mins of running helps the engine and the radiator of the car to perform better. When we do this, the radiator and the engine throw out all the heat generated due to the initial combustion in the engine.

Next... gear shifting:

Most of the cars now, have a meter called the Tachometer. This Tachometer shows the driver at what RPM (Revolutions per Minute) is he running the engine and how much is he accelerating the car.

While driving petrol cars, the gears must be shifted when the needle reaches 2000 or 2500 rpm i.e. 2 or 2.5 on the tachometer. Gears in a petrol car must be changed at these two rpm figures, because at this rpm, the car is ready for a gear swap. If you change gears at these rpm's the car would give you the best mileage and the drive would be very smooth and steady.

For a diesel car the gears must shifted at 1500 or 2000 rpm i.e. 1.5 or 2 on the Tachometer. 

For the cars that don’t have the tachometer installed in the car, the gears must be swapped or changed at these intervals

1st gear: 0-20 kmph
2nd gear: 20-40 kmph
3rd gear: 40-60 kmph
4th gear: 60-70 kmph
5th gear:70 and above.

As far as possible, drive the car on the maximum gear. This is because, on the maximum gear, the engine and the other components run in a particular tuning and timing. When gears are shifted frequently, the camshafts keep adjusting the valves in the engine and hence a lot of fuel is burnt. This results in unwanted combustion and leads to less mileage. Hence, to save fuel, ideally the car must always be kept on the maximum gear. One will save a lot of money on fuel if he drives in this pattern on the highway.

For any questions or comments, please mail me on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Till then Drive safe, Drive smart and stay HAPPIFIED.

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