Category Archives: Driving Habits

Reduce the risk of COVID-19 in your car

With WHO declaring the COVID-19 a pandemic, the coronavirus has sparked a global awareness about cleanliness and sanitation. While we are urged to wash our hands multiple times a day to stay safe, what happens when we get into our cars and travel for hours every day?

It’s common knowledge that our cars are filled with everything that we bring into it every time we get in and out. We drag into our car all the dust, dirt and various germs that our clothes and shoes have touched. While cleaning our cars should be a regular habit, it should be a bigger priority when a pandemic virus is involved.

There are plenty of companies that offer car Interior Detailing at affordable prices with free doorstep pickup and delivery. Booking such a service is definitely the easier option, however, if you decide to do it yourself, keep yourself and your passengers safe and healthy with these tips:

– Always wear disposable gloves and a mask when cleaning.

– Give your seats a thorough vacuuming to get rid of as much dirt off the seats first before starting the cleaning.

– Use a foam brush or a paintbrush to clean between your AC vents. Vacuum off the dust and wipe it down with either sanitizer or soap and water.

– Scrub down your seats, seat covers and carpet rigorously with soap and water. While bleach is known to kill viruses, do not use bleach on your car interiors as it will damage your car’s upholstery. The three main types of material used for car seats are leather, vinyl, and cloth, each needing different cleaning methods. So it’s best to do some research to find the product that suits your needs.

– Clean your dashboard and your infotainment system with a good alcohol-based sanitizer and a soft thin cloth, especially around the touchscreen console.

– Make sure you thoroughly sanitize all door handles, the steering wheel, shifter handles, seatbelts, and all other surfaces you touch the most in the car.

Once you’ve finished cleaning, don’t forget to wash your hands. Also, wash or sanitize your hands before and after driving. Keep a bottle of hand sanitizer in your car at all times, so you can keep yours and passengers hands clean whenever you get into your car. Washing hands, cleaning and disinfecting surfaces are two of the best ways to defend against spreading the coronavirus; keeping the vehicle in which you commute daily, a clean and healthy environment is highly recommended.

2020-03-11

Did You Know: What do the different road lines indicate?

One of the most common road markings that are ignored by drivers is the road lines. These road markings are the coloured paintings on the roads and help to perform the important function of guiding, regulating and controlling traffic. Especially in a country like India, knowing what these road markings mean and following their rules can make our travels safer and smoother.

What exactly do these markings mean?
Line markings are typically white or yellow. While other colours do exist, white and yellow are the most common ones seen on most roads. Horizontal road signs have the following characteristics:

    – They mark the lanes.
    – Serve as a psychological barrier.
    – They define the directions of traffic.
    – They help drivers with information about the road and the established lanes and areas.

WHITE LINES:
A white line separates lanes of traffic moving in the same direction.

1. Dashed white line
A dashed white line is the most common of all road markings. This line indicates that you are free to change lanes with caution and stay in the other lane. These lines are drawn on either a one-way road or a two-way road where traffic is coming from both sides. A dashed white line allows you to overtake, but only after you have checked for approaching traffic.

2. Solid white line
Solid white lines separate two lanes going in the same direction. However, if the line is solid, this indicates that you should not change lanes and you can’t overtake the vehicle ahead. You can only stay in the lane you are already in.

3. Double solid white line
A double solid white line separates travel lanes and prohibits you from crossing the line. You absolutely cannot change lanes for any reason.
WHITE LINES

YELLOW LINES:
A road with yellow lines in the centre indicates that traffic is travelling in opposite directions.

1. Dashed yellow line
A dashed yellow line indicates that passing is allowed from either direction. If the yellow line is dashed, this means that you are free to pass a slow vehicle in front of you by crossing onto the other side of the road. Using your turn signals to indicate your intent to pass, the opposing lane serves as a temporary additional lane.

2. Single solid yellow line
Yellow lines separate two lanes of traffic moving in opposite directions. If there are two solid yellow lines, this means you are not allowed to pass the car in front of you by crossing into oncoming traffic. A double yellow line indicates that passing is not allowed from either side of the road.

3. Double solid yellow line
If there are double solid yellow lines in the centre of the road, this means you are not allowed to overtake the car in front of you by crossing into oncoming traffic. A double yellow line indicates that passing is not allowed from either side of the road.

4. Combo of a solid yellow line with broken yellow line
If the road has both – a dashed as well as a solid yellow line through the centre, it indicates that passing is only allowed by one direction of traffic. If the line on your side of the road is solid, you cannot pass, even if the other side is dashed. Only the dashed side of the road can pass. To put it simply, if you are driving on the side of the broken line, you can overtake a vehicle in your lane. But if you are driving on the solid line, you cannot overtake.
YELLOW LINES

Low Beam vs. High Beam: When to Use These Headlights

Headlights are designed specifically to cater to the safety and convenience of the driver and ensure the visibility of other vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, animals, as well as other obstacles on the road.

Headlights come in two specific modes — low beam and high beam. The main difference between low and high beam headlights is that a low beam is used for normal night-time driving; whereas high beams are used for driving on roads that have little to no light.

WHEN SHOULD YOU USE YOUR LOW BEAM LIGHTS?
Low beam headlights illuminate the road better in certain conditions and allow other drivers to see your vehicle without blinding them, ensuring fewer accidents. They are also ideal for all weather conditions or anytime your visibility is less than 150 metres. As a lower\ beam lights up the road at short ranges, you’ll mostly use them in the city with well-lit roads and areas. Low beams are designed to aim light down to the ground and towards the side; this way they don’t blind vehicles in the opposite direction or those in front of you.

WHEN SHOULD YOU USE YOUR HIGH BEAM LIGHTS?
High beam headlights are only suited for use in poorly-lit urban roads and rural areas. They should have limited city usage as they tend to blind oncoming traffic due to their bright, long-range illumination. They’re usually used on highways and areas without much traffic. Because high beams are so bright, be sure to switch to your low beam when you’re approaching a vehicle from behind so you don’t blind the driver ahead of you.

While high beams increase your visibility to 350 to 400 feet and help increase visibility when driving on dark streets or highways, you should never solely rely on high beams; nor should you use them on city roads amongst traffic. Never use high beams during unfavourable weather conditions as they cause glare and momentary blindness, making them extremely unsafe.

Over time, headlights tend to get dirty with accumulated dirt, and this can cause lower illumination and visibility on dark roads. Remember to clean your headlights occasionally as a necessary safety measure.

Make sure you adjust your driving speed according to the road and traffic conditions and always be considerate of the other drivers around you.

Self-Driving Cars 101

It might sound like something we’ve only imagined in futuristic fiction novels and movies, but self-driving cars are becoming our reality. With companies like Uber and Lyft laying out plans for autonomous vehicles, it’s not long before driverless cars become the norm.

A self-driving car does not require a human driver to operate the vehicle. It uses various technologies to sense its surroundings without any human intervention.

The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) has defined 5 levels of autonomy to classify self-operating vehicles.

Levels of autonomy
Different cars are capable of different levels of self-driving and are often described by researchers on a scale of 0-5.

Level 0: No Automation
This is your everyday car. All major systems are controlled by humans.

Level 1: Driver Assistance
Certain systems, such as cruise control or automatic braking, may be controlled by the car. The driver and the automated system share control of the vehicle.

Level 2: Partial Automation
The car offers at least two simultaneous automated functions, like acceleration and steering. The system is capable of taking full control of the vehicle; however, the driver must be ready to intervene if the system fails to recognize a potential hazard.

Level 3: Conditional Automation
The car can manage all safety-critical functions under certain conditions, but the driver is expected to take over when alerted.

Level 4: High Automation
The car is fully-autonomous in some driving scenarios, though not all. Drivers can safely divert all attention away from driving tasks and let the automated system take full control.

Level 5: Full Automation
The car is completely capable of self-driving in every situation. Level 5 capable vehicles will be able to manoeuvre through all road conditions and require no human control whatsoever.

While the technology exists and is ever-evolving, there are not currently any fully autonomous self-driving cars on the road today. But we’re definitely en route to seeing them fully functioning on our roads in the near future.