The most harmful driver habits that can affect your fleet
Even the best of us can sometimes make mistakes. Improper use of brakes, incorrect heating of the engine, or ignoring the warning signals of the car can lead to permanent damage. All cars in your fleet are a valuable investment and certainly an indispensable asset for your operations. So it is normal to check the fleet, service them periodically and probably ignore these harmful driver habits that have a negative impact on the car.
The most damaging habits
Ignoring the use of the handbrake
When you park in a sloped area, it’s best to use the handbrake even if you could think it’s not a necessity.
If you don’t use the handbrake, you will pressure the transmission, while a small pin not larger than your little finger (in the case of the automated gearbox), which has the role to maintain the car in the parking position will be overworked.
In the case of a stick, the gearbox is forced when you leave the car in gear on a slope.
Switching between DRIVE and REVERSE before a full stop
In the case of an automated car, switching between DRIVING and REVERSE modes does not work the same as for a manual car. If drivers force the car and make the switch in an unusual way, it is possible to have problems with the transmission shafts.
Forcing the clutch
In the case of a manual transmission, drivers sometimes have the habit of keeping the clutch depressed even when it is not time to brake or change gears. This leads to wear and increases the cost of the fleet in the long term.
Adding small amounts of fuel to the tank
Even if there may be times when you cannot afford to fill up, or you wait for a more suitable time to fill up, adding fuel in small quantities from time to time and driving in conditions where you have a low level of fuel in the tank, can damage your car.
This happens because it forces the car to use the fuel in the lower portion of the tank, where sediments will lead to damage. On top of this, it leads to clogging of the fuel filter or to these residues reaching the level of the engine. Besides, the fuel pump will no longer be cooled due to the large volume of fuel that surrounds it and will work all the time at high temperatures, which eventually leads to its failure.
Using brakes when descending
Although drivers may be tempted to stop in an emergency if they are going down a slope, keeping the brake pedal depressed in these conditions or in general may cause damage to the braking system.
Driving this way can put them at risk of damaging the brakes. It is more advisable to try to run at a low speed, at a lower gear, if possible. Instruct the drivers to use the engine brake as much as possible, adjust the speed, and not keep their foot on the brake all the time.
Sudden departures and stops
Pressing the brake or accelerator pedal at the last moment can negatively affect the number of kilometers you can drive with the car and even cause damage to parts such as brake pads and discs.
Using the handbrake to rest your arm
If the car does not have an armrest, drivers shouldn’t leave all the weight of their arm on the handbrake, especially when it is raised.
Transport large loads
It’s normal to use the car for the operations of your business. But driving large distances with packages over the maximum allowed weight is not indicated. It stresses the car components and leads to wear and damage.
Incorrect heating of the car
On a cold morning, it’s normal to let the car run a little before going on the road. However, it’s not good to slam the acceleration to try and heat up the engine faster. This maneuver causes sudden temperature changes that can damage the car and force the engine to work under pressure before the oils have had the time to circulate.
Ignoring car signals
It’s not unusual to hear abnormal noises coming from the car. They usually occur before technical problems arise. So it’s good to know how the car sounds normally, to catch on time any possible malfunction. And of course, do not ignore the lights on your dashboard.