Car tips

8 Simple Steps to Drive a Manual Car in Nigeria

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While the number of automatic transmission vehicles in Nigeria has grown over the years, there are still many Nigerians who drive manual vehicles, and it is undeniable that driving a manual gives you a unique sense that no automatic can take place.

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With the number of manual cars available in Nigeria, it’s also the vehicle many driving schools in Nigeria make use of. If you are struggling to learn how to drive a manual car in Nigeria, we share with you simple steps to aid your driving journey.

In this article, we will look into 8 easy steps to drive a manual car. Before that, here’s what you should know about manual gearboxes.

Manual Transmission Vehicles

A standard manual car has 3 pedals which are the clutch pedal on the left, the brake pedal in the centre, and the accelerator on the right.

The accelerator and the brake share a common feature that the harder they are pressed, the stronger the effects are created. While firmer pressure on the accelerator ensures the more quickly picked up speed, the more pressure on the brake slows down the car more quickly.

The clutch is the one thing that differs a manual from an auto and driving with a clutch is also more difficult.

The clutch is made up of 2 metal plates that connect the drive wheel with the engine. It allows you to disconnect the drive wheels from the engine by applying the clutch pedal.

Here are the eight simple steps to aid you with driving a manual car:

  • Step 1: Fasten Your Seatbelt

Safety should always be your top priority when driving. Before you do anything else, ensure you fasten your seatbelt securely. This essential step is non-negotiable and a legal requirement in most places.

  • Step 2: Start Your Engine with Your Key

Insert your key into the ignition and turn it to start the engine. Listen for the sound of the engine coming to life; this is the moment when your car is ready to roll.

  • Step 3: Press the Clutch Pedal Down with Your Left Foot

With your left foot, press the clutch pedal all the way down to the floor. The clutch pedal disengages the engine’s power from the wheels, allowing you to change gears smoothly.

  • Step 4: Switch Your Gear Stick into the First Gear

With the clutch pedal fully depressed, move the gear lever into the first gear position. The first gear is the lowest and used for starting the car from a complete stop.

  • Step 5: Gently Press Your Right Foot on the Accelerator to Slightly Increase the Revs

While still keeping the clutch pedal depressed, gently press your right foot on the accelerator pedal. This action slightly increases the engine’s revolutions per minute (RPM), preparing it for movement.

  • Step 6: Gradually Lift Your Left Foot off the Clutch Until It Starts Vibrating Gently

Here’s where the magic happens. Slowly and smoothly release your left foot from the clutch pedal while applying slight pressure on the accelerator. You’ll feel a point where the clutch engages with the engine, and the car will start to move. This point is commonly referred to as the “biting point.” It’s crucial to release the clutch pedal gently to avoid stalling the engine.

  • Step 7: Remove the Handbrake

Once you’ve reached the biting point and your car starts to move forward, release the handbrake. Ensure it’s fully disengaged. Your car will now be in motion.

  • Step 8: Bring More Revs While Raising Your Left Foot off the Clutch Slowly

To continue moving smoothly, gradually apply more pressure on the accelerator pedal while slowly releasing the clutch pedal. This should be done in a coordinated manner. As you do this, your car will pick up speed. Practice is key here, as finding the right balance between the clutch and the accelerator will help you transition smoothly through the gears and drive proficiently.

Note that if you release the clutch too quickly or don’t make enough revs, your car will stall. The red lights on the dashboard will be on to signify the engine cuts out.

To deal with your car stalling, press on the brake pedal, turn off the engine, turn the gear back to neutral, and start over the process.

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