How To Drive A Manual Transmission

This article offers an in-depth instruction on how to drive a manual transmission. Everything you will ever need to know about controlling the clutch is included here.The clutch, it's enough to make some people drive automatics, but once mastered it will give you great control over the car.

In this article, I'll be showing you instructions of how to using the clutch control in slow moving traffic, creeping out at junctions and controlling the car on a hill. It's easy to over-complicate the clutch, so I'll be keeping it as simple as possible.

Precaution - Get to know the biting point

To find the biting point, press the clutch down, go into 1st gear, and press the gas slightly to get the revs up to around one and a half. This will help you not stall. You would need a bit more when going uphill or no gas for going downhill.

You might get away with not using any gas here, but it's not good practice, especially in older cars that might stall easier. Raise the clutch until I find the biting point. You know when you've got it as you feel the back of the car dip down slightly and the engine sound changes.

To make sure it's safe all around, release the handbrake, and the car starts to move. If you hold the clutch still, it will maintain this speed. If you move the clutch down the thickness of a pound coin, it will slow the car down. Raising the clutch speeds up the car and that's clutch control.

Instruction – How to drive a manual transmission

  • Controlling the clutch when driving slowly

When you want to drive on, then bring the clutch up gently. Holding the biting point for too long could wear out your clutch. But, if you release the clutch too quickly then you can expect to either stall or zoom off too quick. It's just about finding the right balance.

Raise the clutch slowly to make yourself move. Don't forget to give it some gas when moving off as it can really help you not stall. Plan ahead all the time. If you are turning right, get into position - 1st gear ready to go. By using the handbrake, you can get your feet ready to move off.You don't want to get the biting point too early, because if you hold the biting point for too long, it can wear out the clutch.

You don't want to set the gas too early either because that would waste fuel and cause pollution. It will be vital that you get the biting point.

Otherwise, you will roll backward. Got the gas and the biting point, you're ready to move. When you see the traffic lights are changing, so oncoming cars are stopping, clutch slowly comes up. If you release the clutch too quickly there, you would definitely be stalled.

  • Controlling the clutch when driving downhill

Moving off downhill is a lot easier than moving off uphill. You won't need any gas or any biting point as gravity will just make me move. So, simply press down the clutch, go into 1st gear, and your right foot will be ready for the brake. Check all around and the blind spot and release the handbrake. If you raise the clutch up too quickly, you would be zoomed away or stalled.

  • Controlling the clutch when driving uphill

transportation and vehicle concept - man shifting the gear on car manual gearbox

You'll definitely need the handbrake. If you are in 1st gear, get the revs up to around 2. Then really make sure that you've got the biting point. You should feel the back dip down, and the front raised up. Just hold the clutch steady until you really feel that there, the handbrake goes down. Keep the clutch still, and then the clutch will slowly come up.

To control the speed on the hill with the gas and the clutch, move the clutch very slowly, raise it to accelerate or lower it down to slow down. It's actually to hold the car still just using the gas and the clutch. Takes a bit of practice but it can be done. You don't usually want to hold the biting point for that long as it does wear out the clutch, but I just wanted to show you for demonstration purposes the power of the clutch.

Tips for driving a manual transmission

If you want to brake gently, leave the clutch as late as possible as before you clutch down not to coast. Coasting is when you press the clutch down too early, and the car can freewheel, speed up, and you lose a bit of control.

If you've got a downhill start and it’s quite a busy road, you won't need too much biting point. The hill will launch you away and then the clutch slowly comes up as you apply more gas. Don't let go of the clutch too quickly, ease off the clutch gently and then straight up to next gear.

Especially look out for pedestrians. You should get the handbrake on so you can press the gas then the clutch slowly comes up. If you stall when moving off at a junction then you're either not giving it enough gas, the clutch is coming up too quick, or you're in the wrong gear.

To move away from a tight space, firstly get the gas and the biting point in 1st gear. Then make sure it's safe all around. The main thing here is not to let go of the clutch too soon. You should be really holding onto the biting point, lowering it down to slow down and then raising the clutch to speed up.

Again there's no hurry to let go of the clutch. Otherwise, you would be stalled or zoomed off into the other parked cars. If you are learning to drive, make sure you practice a lot on a daily basis. Professional help from a qualified driving instructor is also always recommended. Hopefully, this instruction can help you master the hardest parts in driving a manual car.

About the Author Leroy Simmons

My name is Leroy L.Simmons. I create this blog as the way to find out my excitement and also a way to remember my father. I always love writing, I embarked on this adventure of the blog, to tell you all that I want to share about my hobby, my dream of auto, truck and journey. At MRVEHICLE.NET, I hope to tell you great stories and especially to answer some questions you might ask. And there are also many interesting and up-to-date stories of drivers on their journey everywhere in the world.

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