I remember passing my test like it was yesterday. It was quite an achievement for me as it took 5 attempts, yes 5! I was so relieved to finally be a fully fledged driver but what I hadn’t realised was I only had one aspect of car driving under my belt. I hadn’t even begun the journey of how to maintain and look after a car.
I remember being taken to the petrol station during one driving lesson to fill up the Renault Clio I was learning in and thinking that keeping it topped up with fuel was the key to keeping out of the garage and avoiding breakdowns. How wrong was I, hey?
My son has been on driver awareness courses that have taught him about all aspects of driving, and he’s taking road lessons now. He has a far better understanding of the operations of a car than I ever did. He could probably put me to shame, even now if we were to be quizzed about warning lights and safe tyres!
I was after all the women who drove around for a week not realising my full beam was on! I couldn’t figure out what other drivers were getting so upset about. When I finally realised, I felt a bit of an idiot I can tell you.
My other near disaster was picked up by a colleague when I drove into the staff car park one day. I’d noticed a clicking noise, but figured as the car was still working it must be ok. If I turned out the radio up, I couldn’t hear it anyway! I know what you’re thinking, I am that women that gives female drivers a bad name. I wish it wasn’t true, but sadly it is.
Anyway, this chap notices the clicking also, and suggests I might want to put some oil in it. Apparently that was what the warning light was telling me! Doh! When I checked, there wasn’t a drop in there. Who knew you were supposed to check these things regularly.
I’ve also had engine lights come on, and thought, ‘don’t worry about it, it will probably go away soon.’ It doesn’t though does it and it usually ends with trying to start the car on the morning when I really can’t be late for work, and it’s given up the ghost in protest. We are then left doing the tow of shame to the garage, which is most humiliating.
If ever there was a woman who needed to do a basic car maintenance course, it was me! Do you check your tyres regularly and top up your oil, or do you leave it until something goes seriously wrong? I’d love to hear your stories.
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Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net/Witthaya Phonsawat