General Question

f4a's avatar

How to drive a manual car?

Asked by f4a (601points) June 6th, 2009

i would like to know the step by step procedure on how to drive a car. from the very start of igniting using the key. i’m more confused about the shift and the alternating steps on what to step on. especially during up hill, humps, starting the car, etc. i got used to driving automatic cars.

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11 Answers

_bob's avatar

Call a driving school.

DarkScribe's avatar

A lot of people don’t realise this, but it is easier and takes less time to learn to safely fly a light plane than to drive a car. Would you look for advice on how to fly on-line? You need to learn with an instructor.

f4a's avatar

its not like im going to drive without getting someone to actually teach me how to drive. i only want a heads up on how to drive manually. so i wont look foolish when im actually being thought by an instructor… im a responsible driver.

_bob's avatar

@fish4answers The instructor won’t find you foolish at all. Don’t worry.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@DarkScribe uhhh really?Your making this out to sound like some huge deal. What the hell are they going to do if they screws up? Stall out in his driveway…Go NOWHERE.. Nothing like a plane….

Anywhoooooo driving a manual vehicle is fairly simple once you get the hang of it. Starting is always the hardest part, but once your going, your fine.

Sooo assuming your car is parked push the clutch all the way in and then turn the key to turn the vehicle on.(make sure your not in gear or your going to stall when you release your foot from the clutch.) Take your parking brake off push the clutch in all the way and put it in first gear. Now heres the tricky part, you want to push your right foot down on the gas as you lift your left foot off the clutch. If you release your foot off the clutch too fast you’ll jerk forward and stall so nice and slow, but if you dont give it enough gas as your releasing the clutch, you’ll also stall. This is the most frustrating part of learning, you need to find that sweet spot.

Ok, cars rolling now keep an eye on your tachometer, generally you want to shift when your around 2–3k RPM when your first learning before you really get a feel for the car. Now to shift into second release the gas pedal and push in the clutch, with the clutch depressed shift down into second gear and then begin releasing the clutch as you push down the gas. Each following gear is the same process. If your ever cruising at 50+ its usually a good idea to go into 5th even if you dont need to as it will save you gas.

Starting on hills are a real pain when your first learning. All you have to do different though is give the car a bit more gas than you normally would when your starting off. Try and find a hill somewhere on a empty back road and practice on it. It will give you a lot of experience and make you less nervous when you actually have to do it with cars behind you and such.

And last, this is probably the most important, when your first learning, you are going to stall. a lot. Dont fret over it, it just takes some time to get it. If your driving and theres someone behind you and you stall at a light or something, dont freak out, try and remain calm, think about what your doing and what you practiced and just do it. Freaking out will only make matters worse. Enjoy learning manual, youll never want a automatic car again after this :P

i think i covered everything?

westy81585's avatar

uberbatman has a good walk thru… but honestly, the only real way to learn is to have someone show you in person.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@westy81585 i agree. When i learned though, i had someone teach me for a hour once , and then i was left to figure the rest out from there, so its still possible :).

rooeytoo's avatar

When I first learned my dad took me out (in a 49 chevy panel truck no less) on a little used country road. Parked it on a slight incline and told me to take over. He said keep your foot on the brake and let the clutch out until you hear the engine start to stutter, when it does hold the clutch right there and let off the brake, you should stay put with no roll back. Then feather, out with the clutch a hair and in with the gas. I can start on a hill with no rollback at all, but like they keep saying, practice practice practice. I love to drive a stick, well until I came to Australia and had to learn to shift with my left hand instead of my right, it still doesn’t seem normal even after 11 years!

ubersiren's avatar

Ask a friend or family member who knows how, and blindfold and gag them and make them instruct you, for as many hours as it takes until you get it, or start removing body parts starting from little to big. Ahem… I’ve been having weird dreams lately.

Judi's avatar

I told my son that driving a clutch is like music. It’s rhythm and timing. (He was a musician and from that point on he was fine.)

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

Judi has it correct, once you have the steps down, (like musical notes) the rest just flows. A couple of pointers, though. Your clutch is an expensive piece of equipment. Replacing a clutch is very expensive so you only want to use it when you need it. and no more. Sitting at a light, keep your foot off the clutch, holding it in with the car in first gear burns up the throwout bearing. Sit in neutral, foot on the brake, left foot hovering near the clutch. When driving, downshifting is fun, but not necessary, unless you are going around a corner, or need to stop quickly. The best way to stop, say coming up to a light or stop sign, is to leave the vehicle in whatever gear you happen to be in, say fourth or fifth, and use your brakes to slow down. When your motor sounds like it is going to stall, push the gearshift to neutral, once your revs are low enough, you can do it without using the clutch.

Brake replacement is about three times less than clutch replacement, and if you drive with these tactics in mind, you should only have to replace that clutch once in the life of the car. That one time is from the steep learnign curve of figuring out how to drive a manual transmission.

Traffic flow, like driving itself, is a ballet. Once you understand that, driving becomes a pleasure, and skill you are always learning. there are no perfect drivers, and courtesy will get you farther than being an aggressive asshole behind the wheel. With the proper technique, driving becomes easy and fluid and everything just sort of works out, like a great symphony. The thing that annoys me are the people with no sense of timing that make driving a chore for the rest of us.

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