How to Drive Manual? Follow 16 simple and Easy Steps

Last Updated on April 1, 2015 by Amir Arif

Do you want to learn how to drive a manual transmission? It is a right place to get an understating of manual car driving step by step. Driver must know the basic concepts like how to move a manual transmission car by shifting its gear position. Check step by step guide of manual drive below.

Step No.1 Fasten Seat Belt

Once you get in, you need to fasten your seat belt. It is better for you to roll down the windows since you would be able to hear engine sounds and then to make necessary adjustments in the gears.

Step No.2 Identify Three Pedals

There are three pedals in a manual car: clutch, brake and gas/accelerator. Middle pedal is the brake, far left pedal is the clutch and far right pedal is gas/accelerator. It is good to know that you will find same layout in both left and right hand drive vehicles.

Step No.3 Learn function of Clutch

Basically, the clutch helps driver to disengage the spinning engine from the spinning wheels. You don’t need to grind each gear separately since gear switching is possible via clutch. The clutch must be depressed before you switch gears by moving it up or down.

Step No.4 Seat Adjustment

You must have to press the clutch fully to floor with your left foot. In case your left foot isn’t reach properly to this pedal then you might not be able to press the clutch in a right way. Adjust your seat in a way that your left foot can reach effortlessly to left pedal i.e. the clutch.

Step No.5 Start Using Clutch

In order to get complete understanding of clutch, you need to press the clutch and hold it to the floor for some time. You would be able know how the travel of clutch pedal is different from both gas and brake. Press the clutch, hold it and release it.

Step No.6 Get Neutral Gear

You need to move the gear shift knob to neutral, that is middle position of gear. You have to move the knob from side to side for at tainting neutral position. You often hear a vehicle is “out of gear”, this condition occurs when either gear shift is in its neutral position or clutch pedal is fully depressed.

Step No.7 Start Engine

Insert key into car key hole and start the engine. You need to hold the clutch pedal to the floor while you are starting engine.

Step No.8 Release Clutch

You are free to remove your left foot from the clutch pedal as soon as engine gets started. However, you need to make sure that clutch pedal is in neutral situation.

Step No. 9 Get First Gear

You need to move the gear shift knob to first gear, it is upper left position. You will have to move the gear after pressing clutch pedal to floor. Normally, a gear shift knob has visual layout on top. This layout notifies you whether you have first gear, neutral position or second gear.

Step No.10 Get understanding of Friction Point

You need to lift up your foot slowly from clutch pedal till you hear engine speed is going down, press the clutch pedal again at this point. You need to repeat this again and again until you familiarize with this sound. It is known as the friction point.

Step No.11 Balance Pedal Pressure and Start Moving

In order to move your car, you first need to remove your foot slowly from the clutch until RPMs (revs) drops and then to apply a little pressure to the gas/accelerator pedal. For moving car steadily on road, you must know how to balance the pressure on both clutch and gas pedals. Try to maintain the balance by slightly pressing down the accelerator while releasing pressure on clutch pedal. Keep your eye on RPMs, release pressure on clutch and when you see that engine revs has started dropping then put pressure on gas pedal. Do it several times until you make the right balance, which is required for preventing car stalling. In case of emergency, you need to know how to pull the hand brake as soon as you can.

Caution Note: Keeping a proper balance of pressure on both pedals is essential. In case you release pressure on clutch very quickly then car will stall When you hear engine sound that the car is going to stall then your task is to put a slightly more pressure on clutch where it is. When clutch is between fully up and fully depressed then excessive engine speed will wear out the clutch parts too early. This situation often cause clutch parts slippage or smoking at the transmission.

Step No.12 Shift Second Gear

So, you have started driving and you see the RPM reaches to 2500-3000 level; it is right time to switch to second gear. Normally, when the tachometer reaches to this level then you hear a different sound of engine, it seems that engine is speeding up. You must familiarize yourself with this noise since it is the time when you need to shift the gear. Your task is to slightly press the clutch pedal to floor and then to change the gear shift knob from 1st gear to bottom left position, which is 2nd gear.

Step No.13 Press Gas Pedal

Release the clutch pressure while pressing down the gas pedal at the same time.

Step No. 14 Free Clutch pedal

When your car has second gear and it’s on the gas, you are able to free the clutch pedal from the left foot.

Step No.15 Time for Brake Pedal

When you want to stop at some place then you need to release your right foot from accelerator pedal and move it to your brake pedal. Press brake down as much as you want. Car speeds slows down ad it reaches to 10 mph, it’s time to fully press the clutch pedal down and move the gear to neutral (middle) position. Actually, when car speeds drops then it starts shaking and vibrating. Pressing the clutch and shifting the gear will let you prevent stalling.

Step No.16  Go and Drive

Practice makes a man perfect. Once you become a master, you would love to drive manual.

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