How to Effectively Park a Car

Published: 05th May 2010
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A skilled driver is able to park his vehicle with ease in any parking space. Depending on the type of space provided, there are two techniques that can be used: parallel parking and angle parking. Here are the steps in parking your vehicle parallel to the curb.



Parallel Parking



1. Approach the parking space with your car situated about one to two feet to the left of the parked cars on your right.

2. Check traffic and give the proper signal for stopping.

3. Stop your vehicle beside the car in front of the space you will be using. Be sure your car is one to two feet from this vehicle, and have your rear bumper in line with the rear bumper of the other car.

4. After shifting to reverse, check oncoming traffic, and look over your right shoulder. Back slowly, turning your steering wheel rapidly to your right until you are at a 45 degree angle to the curb. Straighten your wheels and continue backing.

5. Continue this path (45 degrees) until the front bumper of your car is opposite the rear bumper of the car you are parking behind.

6. Turn your wheel sharply to the left while continuing to back slowly into the parking space.

7. Be sure you are watching the gap between your car and the vehicle behind you.

8. Move the car slowly forward, straightening the wheels as you go. Stop when your car is equally-spaced between the car in front and the car behind. There should be no more than nine inches between your right door and the curb.

9. Set the parking brake. Place the car in Park. Remove the key and lock the doors.





Once you have parked your car, the next procedure you must know is how to move your car out of the parking space and into the driving lane.



1. Keep your wheels straight, and back up until your rear bumper is almost touching the car behind.

2. Stop. Shift the car to Drive.

3. Check for oncoming traffic.

4. Signal for a left turn. In a line of parked cars, use your left arm for the signal to make sure you will be seen.

5. When the way is clear, start moving slowly forward, turning the steering wheel rapidly to the left.

6. When the front half of your car is in the right-hand traffic lane, begin turning the steering wheel to your right.





Check repeatedly to see that the right side of your car bumper does not strike the car in front of the parking space.



Many young drivers are worried by the above maneuver. Be sure you understand the above steps, and practice until you are competent in parallel parking.



Angle Parking



Angle Parking is another skill which all drivers must know. Knowing exactly at what point to turn the wheel is crucial, so follow the steps below carefully.



1. Check traffic and give the proper signal.

2. Approach the parking space with your car about five feet from the parked cars on your right.

3. When the front bumper is in line with the parking-space entrance, begin steering to your right.

4. Move slowly and steer carefully to be sure that the left edge of your front bumper does not strike the car to the left of the space, and the right side of your car does not strike the car to the left of the space, and the right side of your car does not strike the car on your right.

5. Watch the front end of your car, and be sure that your bumper is close to any barrier but not touching it. If there is a curb, ease your wheels close to it.

6. Set the parking brake.

7. Put the gear shift into the park position.



Leaving an angle parking-space is perhaps more hazardous than entering, because of the blind areas created by the cars to your right. Here is the recommended procedure to follow:



1. Shift to reverse. Check for traffic and pedestrians. Check blind spots.

2. Moving slowly and cautiously, inch the car backwards until you can be absolutely sure that the traffic is clear. Stop if a car is approaching.

3. When traffic permits, proceed straight back. As your front bumper passes the rear bumper of the car on your left, steer sharply to your right.

4. When your car is parallel to the edge of the street or road, stop, shift into drive, and proceed.



Parking on a Hill



Have you ever watched a car roll downhill with no driver? Your first instinct might be to laugh, but the realization of how dangerous it is soon follows. To avoid such a situation for your car, follow the next three rules carefully.



1. When you are parking uphill on a street with a curb, the front wheels should be pointed to the left. Put the car in park, and set the parking brake.

2. When you are parking downhill on a street with a curb, the front wheels should be pointed to the right. Put the gear selector in park, and set the parking brake.

3. When you are parking uphill or downhill on a road which does not have a curb, the front wheels should be pointed to the right. Put the car in park, and set the parking brake.

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