Parking a car is the nightmare of many drivers. Suddenly, the otherwise docile vehicle no longer wants to obey the driver. Everything suddenly seems much closer; everything seems confusing and manoeuvring becomes a pain. But don’t worry. Correct parking is always manageable if you follow a few rules of thumb and a few mottos. Read this article to find out how to get a car into any parking space correctly.
The challenge of parking
What is so difficult about parking? One should take the fears and reservations about this manoeuvre seriously. Manoeuvring a car slowly is the art that needs to be learned and requires a lot of practice.
But no matter how anxious you are about the task, you should always remember one thing: Cars are built so that you can park them, and there is no exception. Therefore: Put your fear aside and stick to the rules point by point. In a short time, this manoeuvre will work so well that anyone can become a parking professional.
Retrofitting parking aids
Reverse parking sensors and rear-view cameras are enormously helpful. Especially people who have great problems with parking should retrofit these features to their vehicle. They are available as accessories for very little money and can be installed in just a few steps.
Preparation: Adjusting the rear-view mirror and ensuring visibility
When parking, you should have your eyes everywhere.
|Therefore, prepare your car as follows:
– Right exterior mirror: still see side of vehicle at edge, align straight.
– Left exterior mirror: keep the left rear wheel visible at the edge.
– Interior mirror: straight back.
– Clear the view to the rear window.
Mirrors adjusted correctly are indispensable for successful parking.
Parking forward only seems to be particularly easy.
Because if you drive into a parking space forward, you have to reverse out again.
- Then there is the added complication of having to keep an eye on cross-traffic.
Nevertheless, there are situations in which parking forward is unavoidable.
- Parking pockets adjacent to houses often have signs saying that you should only park forward. The reason for this is to avoid blowing exhaust fumes into the windows of the people inside.
Forward parking is particularly easy.
- The important thing here is to drive the car straight and into the middle of the parking space.
- The car should be parked in such a way that there is the same distance to the left and right of the boundary strips of the parking space. This way you can get out of the car yourself without any problems – and you are not blocking any neighbouring parking spaces.
Parking backwards in parking pockets
Parking backwards in parking pockets has the advantage that you can drive forward out again. You have a perfect view of the cross traffic. To park backwards, you only need the exterior mirrors.
The maxim here applies:
“You can rely on the exterior mirrors!”
The respective border strips must be clearly visible in the mirrors.
Everything else here is the same as when parking forwards: Keep the car straight and place it in the middle – that’s it.
If you don’t succeed at the first attempt, use the following trick: drive the car straight out of the parking space and then manoeuvre it straight back again.
The supreme discipline: backwards into the side parking space
Parking backwards into a side parking space is the most challenging parking manoeuvre.
At the same time, it is the easiest variant if you stick to the rules. You don’t even need the modern additional electronic features.
Correct parking works as follows:
1. Starting point: your right exterior mirror should be left to exterior mirror of front car and keep half a metre distance.
2. Let the car backwards slowly and look back.
3. When the B-pillar (centre roof post) of the car is parallel to the rear of the front car, turn the steering wheel all the way to the right.
4. When the right inner door handle is parallel to the rear of the front car (or the car is at a 45° angle in the parking space), turn the steering wheel all the way to the left.
5. When the left front wheel is in the parking space, turn the steering wheel straight ahead.
6. Drive up to the front car.
7. Back straight up again and make sure there is enough room for everyone – done.
Mistakes to avoid
- You should never try to park forwards in a narrow side parking space.
This is either unsuccessful or takes a very long time.
- The longer you manoeuvre back and forth, the higher the risk of collision.
This does not have to be the nearby vehicles. Boundary posts or the kerb can also cause expensive damage if they come into contact.
Practice makes perfect
You can practise at parking with a few simple aids.
You need the following:
– about 10 moving boxes,
– something to weigh them down,
– a place to practise undisturbed.
Nice places to practise are, for example, the car parks of DIY stores on a Sunday afternoon.
- The boxes are set up. They simulate the walls of houses or other parked cars. Then they are weighed down with stones, bottles or whatever else is handy. That way they can’t fly away.
- Now feel free to practise every parking manoeuvre under almost real conditions. Collisions with the cardboard boxes are completely safe for the car. So, you can practically do nothing wrong.
- Then it’s practice, practice, practice until every movement and every look is right. It’s best to do this on your own. That way you can concentrate on the training and don’t have to fear demotivating comments.
At the end of the day, everyone can be cured of their parking panic and become a parking champion ☺
Foto: mrpics, nednapa, Rawpixel.com, l i g h t p o e t, R McKown, Flystock / shutterstock.com