Our car maintenance tips and tricks
Jan 31

10 Common Driving Mistakes That Could Be Harming Your Car

Everyone makes errors when it comes to driving. However, if you want to keep your automobile in good shape in the long run, you need to break a few habits. You could even be engaging in some risky driving behaviours that endanger you, your passengers, and other motorists. For some recommendations on typical driving practises to avoid in order to maintain your automobile healthy, see the list below.


Even if everything appears to be normal, you should never disregard a dashboard light. Here are some of the most critical dashboard lights to keep an eye on:

  • Brake light 
  • Airbag warning 
  • Tire pressure
  • Oil pressure warning light 
  • Check engine light


The act of leaving your foot on the brake pedal for an extended length of time is known as “riding the brakes.” It can cause excessive wear and tear as well as overheating, which reduces stopping power. This is obviously a significant risk, as your brakes must react as quickly and precisely as possible. Instead of keeping your foot on the brake when driving in traffic or downhill, consider lifting your foot off the accelerator a little more to slow down and leave plenty of room between your car and the one in front of you. If you’re driving a manual, try a lower gear.


Even if you’re in a rush, always come to a complete stop before switching from drive to reverse. This is especially true if you’re travelling at a speed of more than a few miles per hour. Otherwise, the abrupt gear shift might harm the gearbox, reducing the car’s lifespan.


Potholes are common, especially in cities, and they can be difficult to avoid. However, slamming into or driving over potholes at high speeds might result in significant damage. If you come across a pothole, attempt to slow down or drive around it as much as possible. It might save you a lot of money in the long run-on major repairs.


In general, you should keep your tank at least a quarter filled at all times. If you leave too little petrol in your tank, it might cause your fuel pump, catalytic converter, and fuel system to fail and overheat. Small quantities of gas added on a daily basis might cause your automobile to take gas from the bottom of the tank, where sediment has accumulated. A blocked fuel filter may arise as a result of this.

To avoid this sort of damage, it’s crucial to have frequent fuel system cleanings and engine tune-ups.


Carrying too much weight inside or on your vehicle might actually harm it, which may surprise you. It may severely reduce your gas mileage while also putting additional strain on nearly every component of your vehicle. Tires can wear out and overheat, putting you at risk of a deadly blowout. In fact, overloading your car is technically unlawful. If you’re carrying too much weight and get into an accident, your insurance coverage may be cancelled. Every vehicle is built to carry a specific amount of weight.

If you go beyond that limit, your automobile will become unstable, posing a serious safety risk, and perhaps resulting in an accident.


Using your parking brake every time you park is a smart idea. It’s a backup safety feature that can prevent the automobile from rolling over, especially if you’re driving up a slope. Regularly using the parking brake will keep it in good working order in the event of an emergency. Otherwise, if the cables haven’t been used in a while, they may seize. Failure to use it could result in premature wear on other parts of the vehicle, particularly the transmission. It’s critical to have your parking brake checked on a regular basis.


It’s critical to pay attention if your car is trying to tell you something is wrong. All cars make noise, but if you notice one that is unusual, you should seek the advice of an auto repair professional. While some sounds do not indicate serious damage, others indicate that something is wrong with your vehicle and that it may not be safe to drive.  Don’t take the chance if your automobile starts producing noises you don’t recognise. Have it checked out by a mechanic as soon as possible.


It’s always a good idea to let your car sit for a few minutes after starting it. It gives the oil time to circulate throughout the engine. This process will not be accelerated by revving the engine, and it may produce tension between components. If your automobile isn’t fully warmed up, you should never rev the engine. It can also wear out cylinder walls, crankshafts, rings, bearings, and valves prematurely.


When you go to the gas station, you’ll normally discover a variety of fuel selections. It’s critical to understand which one you need for your specific car, since utilising the incorrect one might cause issues.

For example, if you totally load a gas engine with diesel fuel, the car will cease operating. Because gas engines lack the compression ratio to ignite the gasoline, it will remain in the tank, causing damage to injectors, lines, and the fuel pump. Putting gasoline in a diesel engine may destroy the pistons, rods, and perhaps the engine itself.

Contact Smart Mechanics.

Don’t let poor habits ruin your vehicle! Call Smart Mechanics – Car mechanic in Hertfordshire, Car mechanic in Bishops Stortford, Car mechanic in Stansted, Car mechanic in Essex if you’re having automobile problems. Make an appointment with us right now.

Interested in doing
Fleet Services
with us?

Here at Smart Mechanics we do contract work with our retail clients.

Want to know more? Speak to one of our experts from the team today.

(We cannot provide any warranty on parts supplied by the customer.)