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How to Park on an Incline? Some Insights You Might Be Missing

Even the most seasoned drivers can find parking on a slope a bit nerve-wracking. But fear not! With a few key techniques, you'll be conquering those inclines like a pro. Here's what you need to know. 

 

Understanding the Enemy:

Slopes come in two flavors: uphill and downhill. Each requires a slightly different approach. When speaking of uphill parking, gravity wants to pull your car backward. When speaking of downhill parking, gavity wants to send your car rolling forward. 

 

Parking uphill:

Position and Approach: Approach the parking space slightly above where you want to end up. This gives you room to maneuver.

Engage the Brake: Come to a complete stop using your brake pedal.

Turn the Wheel: With your foot still on the brake, turn the steering wheel so your front wheels are pointed away from the curb (curb is behind your car).

Gear Up (Manual): Shift into 1st gear. For automatics, this step usually happens automatically when you shift to Park later.

Engage the Parking Brake: Apply the parking brake firmly. You should feel a slight resistance.

Double Check: Take your foot off the brake pedal. The car shouldn't move. If it does, re-engage the parking brake and adjust.

Park it Right: Shift to Park (automatic) or leave it in 1st gear (manual), and turn off the engine.

 

Downhill Domination:

Position and Approach: Stop a safe distance beyond the parking space.

Engage the Brake: As with uphill parking, come to a complete stop.

Turn the Wheel: Turn the steering wheel towards the curb (curb is in front of your car).

Gear Up (Manual): Engage 1st gear. (Automatic transmissions shift to Park later.)

Parking Brake Power: Apply the parking brake firmly.

Carefully Release: Slowly take your foot off the brake pedal. The car should be held by the parking brake. If it rolls slightly, re-engage the brake and adjust.

Park and Secure: Shift to Park (automatic) or leave it in 1st gear (manual), and turn off the engine.

Bonus Tip:  For extra security on steeper slopes, you can use the curb trick. Once you've come to a stop and turned your wheels, allow your car to roll forward slightly until your tires make contact with the curb. This provides an additional physical barrier.

Remember: Always check your mirrors and blind spots before exiting your car on a slope, especially when traffic is flowing. By following these steps and practicing a bit, you'll be parking on inclines with confidence in no time. Happy (and safe) parking!

 

 

TopGear Magazine June 2024