When it comes to driving and the daily commute, even an inadvertent mistake could be dangerous or even deadly. If you are of a certain age, you probably remember your driving lessons only dimly – if at all, and it never hurts to take a refresher course.
You do not have to take a formal driving refresher course to drive more safely and protect your vehicle. Here are five common driving mistakes many area residents make – and how you can correct them.
#1. Overloading Your Trunk
If you have lots of junk in the trunk, it is time to lighten the load. Overloading the trunk can kill your fuel economy, but a heavy load could also make your vehicle unstable in an emergency.
Pull in the garage, take everything out of your trunk and take a good look at everything you have been carrying. Do you really need those lawn chairs? Is it time for the cooler to go back in the house? You should always have a spare tire and emergency kit in your trunk, but the rest of the stuff can probably stay home.
#2. Ignoring Your Tires
Many drivers ignore their tires until they get a flat or face an emergency. If you have been ignoring your tires, you could be putting your safety at risk.
Take a look at the tread on your tires – is it still in good shape, or are your tires starting to show their age? Is the tread wearing evenly, or are you overdue for a tire rotation? Do you have enough air in your tires, or are the tires over or underinflated? You ignore your tires at your own peril, so take a look and get going.
#3. Driving Too Fast
Speeding puts your safety at risk, but it also costs you money. The faster you drive, the more fuel your vehicle will use, and that could take a toll on your wallet.
Backing your speed down even 5 to 10 miles an hour could be a game changer, both in terms of safety and fuel economy. So keep a close watch on your speedometer and drive more sensibly.
#4. Overlooking Minor Maintenance
You might think that things like oil changes and tire rotations are no big deal, but this minor maintenance can make a major difference in how your vehicle runs. Ignoring or overlooking automotive maintenance is a common driving mistake, and one you should not be making.
Take a look at the oil change sticker inside your windshield, then call your mechanic today. While you are at it, ask about tire rotations and other forms of minor maintenance to make your vehicle last longer.
#5. Driving with the Check Engine Light On
Many area drivers are tooling around with their check engine lights on, not realizing the damage they could be doing. If your check engine light is on, your car is try8ing to tell you something.
The check engine light could be a sign of an emission issue, and you should have it diagnosed right away. So do not wait – have the engine light checked and fixed right away – you do not want to make this common driving blunder.