Traffic lights - waiting in 1st gear or neutral Watch

x-pixie-lottie-x
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#41
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#41
this is kinda weird...
i had one instructer who told me to put the car in neutral... he also made me cry and i only had one lesson with him....he also told me to go round some little roundabouts in 3rd ...
i had one instructor before him and another since, and they both say that its best to stay in 1st as your ready to move off, and the car behind u wont see the light change and automatically move before you do...and go into the back of you....
i hated putting it in neutral cuz all the cars infront of me would be miles away by the time id put it back in gear and moved off...

oh yeah and if your stopping for more than a few seconds hand break on... x
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sunspoon
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#42
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#42
It used to be that whenever you were stationary for more than 5 seconds that you should go handbrake + neutral but now that the rules have changed; I find it's better to stay in first gear at the lights with handbrake on, clutch down, because you can pull away faster, especially if you're first off. I only went into neutral if the examiner asked me to 'pull over in a convenient place', because it's parking, or at the end of a maneuvre (I think thats how you spell it?).
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Jonathan
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#43
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#43
(Original post by spikeymike)
What i was taught...

When waiting at traffic lights - fully stop, 1st gear (NEVER neutral on your test, if you passed just whatever you feel :p:) - Never in neutral because your car may roll back if on a hill thus creating a major thus a fail.

If your waiting for any longer than 3-4 secs then handbrake on
How on earth would neutral make you roll back, unless you plan to release the brakes while you're sitting at the lights?
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Jonathan
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#44
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#44
By the way, no-one's been sitting there telling me what to do for the last two years, and I do this:

As I stop, clutch down, first gear, always.
If I'm not going to move off straight away, or there's the slightest of inclines, then handbrake.
Going to have a few seconds' notice before moving away? Knock it into neutral.
Lights go green. Into first, find bite. As the car in front moves, drop the handbrake and pull away.

The reasons for using the handbrake, as I understand, are these:

1. You will be able to pull away reliably without rolling backwards.
2. If you are hit from behind, you will not roll freely into a junction as you would without a handbrake when your foot left the brake pedal.
3. It's easier on the eyes of the driver behind - brake lights can be bright!

This is why, if, late at night, on a level road, with no other cars about, I am waiting at lights, I will stay on the footbrake - unless I see a car approaching from behind, when I will transfer to the handbrake for safety and to save their eyes.
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Shwill
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#45
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#45
(Original post by Tofufi)
You should ALWAYS apply the handbrake rather than the footbrake when waiting. This is so that if somebody ploughs into the back of you, you won't fly forwards into another vehicle or across a junction. If you are only holding it on the footbrake, your foot will fly off the brake if someone hits you.

It's amazing from reading this thread just how badly most people seem to be taught.

You should never use the bite point (that's the clutch half way up...) when waiting at traffic lights.

Keeping it in gear for long waits at traffic lights can increase wear on your clutch release bearing and clutch mechanism. Not that most people on this thread know what those are I'd imagine. But it'll be an expensive repair bill to replace a clutch release bearing, even after taking the engine out to do it.
I know of no one in the States who uses a handbrake except when stopped on a steep incline, or when parked. Not saying any side is right or wrong, I just found it odd that the handbrake seems so widely used in the UK.
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EKO
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#46
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#46
It's pretty embedded in the driving lessons and theory methinks.
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PinkMobilePhone
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#47
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#47
I don't think I've ever waited in neutral
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StylesClash
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#48
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#48
I always wait in neutral unless I know the lights are about to change. I find that the amber light gives me more than enough time to change it into first and get the bite ready, even if I'm first in the queue.
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HJV
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#49
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#49
I never use the hand break unless I'm parking the car or waiting on a ramp to something like a parking hall :rolleyes:

Why would you need to use handbrake in traffic lights, it's pointless...

In traffic lights I just sit there with the clutch down, 1st gear, lightly pressing the brake pedal.

Obviously it's best to try not to have to stop at all in traffic lights. If you see there's red ahead, slow down and wait for the lights to change.
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gefmongoose
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#50
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#50
If it's more than a few seconds wait i'll handbrake whilst in first, but keep the clutch down (why wear the clutch?). As amber appears, I'll get to bite, with hand ready to release the handbrake. If it's a long wait then I'd consider neutral.
I use the handbrake whenever I have to stop for more than a few seconds. It makes the drive more relaxed and smooth - so I don't see the point of grinding the clutch down whilst waiting.
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Oddball
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#51
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(Original post by Jonathan)
...

This is why, if, late at night, on a level road, with no other cars about, I am waiting at lights, I will stay on the footbrake - unless I see a car approaching from behind, when I will transfer to the handbrake for safety and to save their eyes.
This is exactly what I do! Have you had any extra training, by the way?

As for the night time thing, I tend to stay on the brake until the vehicle behind has stopped. I don't keep it on any longer, as you say, it's dazzling.
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JC.
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#52
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If you are stationary, you should be in neutral with the clutch up.
Sat there in gear with the clutch down = excessive wear on the clutch release bearing.
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DirtyHarry
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#53
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#53
People shouldn't be so black and white, different scenarios might mean different things.

If you're waiting at lights for a while you're as well putting your handbrake on and sticking it in neutral but if you're not going to be waiting for very long then why bother with the unnecessary hassle?
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TommyWannabe
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#54
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#54
I was taught;

Handbrake if you're on an incline or if you're waiting for more than 5 seconds because for the reasons discussed previously.

As for being in first or neutral, I think the idea of being in neutral is that if you're hit and your foot comes off the clutch, you don't go jumping into the back of the car in front.

In practise I've kept it in first with the clutch all the way down and the handbrake on.
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Jonathan
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#55
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(Original post by Oddball)
This is exactly what I do! Have you had any extra training, by the way?

As for the night time thing, I tend to stay on the brake until the vehicle behind has stopped. I don't keep it on any longer, as you say, it's dazzling.
No extra training, other than personal experience of a couple of hairy moments, and reading some defensive driving tips (although I've never been specifically advised to do this). I'd love to do some, though - a defensive driving course or blue light training or something - I just don't know a good (and cheap or free) way of doing this.
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Lara C.
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#56
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#56
if i dont see the amber light then i just go into neutral purely for the fact that i hate keeping the clutch down. quite annoying if you have a strong clutch.
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gbduo
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#57
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#57
This is a very interesting thread...I can't keep myself away from reading up on the latest info on whether you should be in first or neutral at the traffic lights! This is just so crucial to my driving skillz!!

I don't know what I would have done without this thread, probably crashed and nearly died, again.
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Tofufi
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#58
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#58
Lol.

Neutral ftw.

Especially if you have an uprated clutch like I do on my super lawnmower engine
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gbduo
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#59
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#59
Tbh, I don't care, I will get rid of my car before any damage I do by doing things wrong affects it.
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Oddball
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#60
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(Original post by Jonathan)
No extra training, other than personal experience of a couple of hairy moments, and reading some defensive driving tips (although I've never been specifically advised to do this). I'd love to do some, though - a defensive driving course or blue light training or something - I just don't know a good (and cheap or free) way of doing this.
If you've got time, try the IAM or RoSPA. OK, so there is a fee to start with (of about £80 if you're under about 25), but then training is free (as it's done by a volunteer) as is the test.

http://www.iam.org.uk/

There are some posts on here on Advanced Driving that I found very useful, I'll dig them out and link it up.

The only reason I say you need some time is that the average length between beginning of training and test is 6 months. Which I certainly didn't leave before I have to go off to university...hoping I can get my test in at the end of August.

Here it is! http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show....php?p=7603737

It's a good read, even if you don't intend to do any extra training.
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