Back Up like a Boss on National Backward Day
Do you skip parking spots because you don’t want to fiddle with parallel parking? Is backing out of driveways giving you a headache? Is this you?
Driving backward requires a different kind of focus while driving and it doesn’t come naturally to every driver. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks to help you the next time you’re backing up!
Keep your spatial awareness
The most common places you see cars reversing are in car parks, driveways, and parking lanes. These are also areas you’ll commonly find obstacles like: pedestrians, children, little old ladies and other people reversing. Before you start backing up, check your mirrors and your blind spots for anything in your way or moving toward you.
Don’t rely on your rear-view mirror
It can be tempting to use the interior mirror while reversing but this actually can complicate the whole process. Mirrors reverse images so everything you’re looking at will appear back to front which adds a layer of difficulty to an already challenging task.
Keep your line of sight
Use your rear-view window to orient yourself and point the back end of your vehicle the way you want to go. If you want to go left, steer left, you want to go right, steer right. As you back up, make subtle adjustments but always keep your rear-view window pointing to where you want to go.
Contrary to whatever this person is doing:
The fastest you should be traveling in reverse is at a walking pace. When you are ready to reverse, release your foot from the brake pedal your vehicle will begin to move backward. Most vehicles engines idle at a high enough RPM to propel the vehicle without having to apply the gas. Do not try to course-correct with any drastic turns, instead keep your movements smooth and relaxed.
Shift out of reverse
Shift to park or neutral as soon as you are finished reversing. If you are waiting for them to exit the vehicle or just daydreaming in the front seat, you’re better off waiting in Park than forgetting you’re in reverse and accidentally causing an accident.
Reversing your car doesn’t need to drive you up the wall unless that’s where you want to go. In which case we hope you’re wearing a seatbelt. The next time you encounter a difficult reversing scenario, we hope we’ve given you the tools to face the situation with confidence and back up like a boss.