Knowing how to change gears smoothly is essential if you are going to learn to drive. A lot of people get stressed over how to change gears, but with our handy tips, there’s no need to be worried.
How to change gears
First of all, how do you change gears in a car? It’s actually a pretty straightforward process once you are familiar with all the steps! You’ll need to do the following:
• Release the accelerator pedal, and press the clutch pedal down at the same time
• Remove your left hand from the steering wheel to the gearstick, holding it gently but firmly as you move it from your current gear, into neutral, and then into the gear you need
• Return your left hand to the steering wheel so that you are in full control of the car’s direction
• Release the clutch pedal slowly, and apply pressure to the accelerator pedal at the same time
One of the first things you should focus on is maintaining good clutch control while you perform a gear change in the car. This will prevent the car from jerking forwards. If the car does do that, then you may be lifting your foot off of the clutch too quickly, or sitting too close to the pedals. Your instructor will be able to tell you if either of those are causing your issues when changing gear.
It’s tempting to rush through a gear change to get it over with, but that’s not always the best idea! Ease the gearstick into neutral, and stay there for a second or two before moving into the gear that you need. Taking your time while changing gears will not only take some of the pressure off of you, but ensure that you select the right gear for your current speed.
During your lessons
The gear controls are one of the first things you will be taught how to get to grips with during your manual driving lessons, so you will have plenty of time to become familiar with them before your test. Remember that your Nayland Driving School instructor is there to answer any questions that you may have during the process.