Driver Skills 101



Basic Skills Any Driver Should Have 
 
Yes, to get your license you need to be able to confidently drive a car, know the rules of the road, and understand how to put those two together. But no one asks you to change a tire during your road test, or asks you to measure the oil on your way back in. To truly be a responsible driver, you need to know what you're dealing with in all aspects. 
 
In these days of run-flat tires and multiple roadside emergency services, it's easy to think that we're always covered in case of a roadside issue. My husband travels a lot for work, and after a few issues where I had to call him to talk me through something, we sat down and made sure I knew a few basics. As we went through it, we decided that our kids won't be heading off on the road alone before they know them too. See one, do one, teach one - and then it's in your brain for when you need it.  

Here's a list of a few skills that every driver should have: 

  • Tires - checking the pressure, adding air, and changing a flat. 
  • Under the hood - checking oil level, where to add necessary fluids (oil, coolant, windshield), and how to jump a car. 
  • What all the lights mean on a dashboard and what to do when you see them. Is this a pull over right now situation or a get to service station situation? 
Being able to manage these, relatively speaking, minor car issues is pretty empowering, and it also makes you more confident when you're talking to a mechanic. 
 
Knowing these things is like knowing how to use a plunger, where your fuse box is, and how to remove a splinter. It's nice to think you won't have to deal with it, but when the inevitable happens, you will never be sorry you learned. (And yes, if you know but you can't quite remember and don't want to mess up, there's no shame in looking at Google or YouTube. I jumped a car while my friend coached me from her phone, and we still think that totally counts.)

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