Steering the wheel, braking, or reversing a car isn’t that difficult, at least if you’ve been to a great driving school. But parallel parking can be challenging even to experienced drivers, but it doesn’t have to be. We’ve covered handy parallel parking tips in this guide to make things easy for you.
First things first:
What Is Parallel Parking?
Parallel parking refers to a parking method in which you park a car parallel to the road, and in line with the rest of the other parked cars.
To parallel park, you should start by driving slightly past the available parking space, parallel to a vehicle parked right in front of that particular space. While at it, keep a safe distance and then reverse your car into the space.
Let’s get started.
Parallel Parking Tips to Keep in Mind
With this parallel parking advice, you’ll be able to master the skill in the least amount of time possible while also avoiding unnecessary tension.
Tip #1: Begin with the Basics
Partial back-ups, angle parking, and 90-degree parking should all be practiced before trying to master parallel parking. You’ll probably have a hard time if you don’t have these abilities.
Tip #2: Don’t Rush
Parallel parking might be nerve-wracking at first, but it’s crucial to take things one step at a time. If you make a mistake in your maneuvering, moving slowly will allow you to use your reference points better and avoid injuring other vehicles.
Tip #3: Ask for Help When in Doubt
Remember, you can always learn parallel parking with the help of a qualified driver who is comfortable with the technique.
Tip #4: Practice Regularly
That’s the greatest piece of advice you’ll ever hear. You’ll pick up the parallel parking skill far more quickly if you practice than just reading or watching tutorials. There will be mistakes, but that’s part of the learning curve! The more mistakes you make, the closer you are to getting it right.
Tips #5: Verify Your Parking Space
Before parallel parking your vehicle, it’s crucial to verify that you’re parked within the designated area. To do this, open your car door and examine the pavement markings to ensure that your vehicle is within the parking spot lines. If there are no markings, park your car, turn off the engine, apply the parking brake, and exit your vehicle.
Tip #6: Inspect Your Vehicle
Once you’re outside of your car, take a moment to inspect its position. Ensure that it’s straight and not protruding into the road where other vehicles could hit it.
A good practice is to position your vehicle between 12 and 18 inches away from the curb and centered between the cars on either side. This way, other drivers will have ample space to exit their parking spots without coming into contact with your car.
How to Parallel Park in 7 Easy Steps
1. Find a Parking Space Fit for Your Vehicle
To accomplish the move, you’ll need a space that’s at least 1.5 times the length of your vehicle. When parallel parking, more experienced drivers may be able to squeeze in with even less room, while inexperienced drivers may require even more space as a precaution.
2. Decide Where to Park Your Vehicle
To parallel the parked automobile in front of you, slowly move your car in a straight line. The distance between your vehicle and the parked car’s side should be two to three feet.
3. Reverse the Vehicle by Fully Turning the Wheel to the Right
Start reversing your car along the parked car’s side slowly. Take the wheel towards the right when you begin to turn it.
4. Reverse Further by Straightening Your Wheels
Turn left and reverse straight until you can see the front of the automobile in your left side mirror. Start reversing when you’ve got your right side mirror covering the vehicle’s taillight in front.
5. Steer Towards the Left
Begin steering to the left as soon as your car passes the bumper of the car in front of you in the parking lot.
6. Confirm How Close You Are
You can see how near your vehicle is to the automobile in the parallel parking position behind you as you continue to reverse and straighten your steering wheel.
This will help to prevent accidents in the parking lot.
7. To Get into Position, Level Your Wheels and Slowly Creep Ahead
Once you’ve gotten your vehicle near the car and straight, you may have to shift forward to get your car in a spot with equal space in front and behind it.
Watch this video for more tips on how to parallel park:
Using Cones to Parallel Park
To avoid damaging other vehicles, it’s great to start learning parallel parking with two cones. Here’s how it’s done:
- Use a street with minimal or no traffic.
- You should place two cones 15 feet apart to make a parking space-sized area.
- It’s important to keep practicing until you’re comfortable with the maneuver and are sure you can parallel park your car safely. Parking places, in reality, might then be used as an example.
Other Parallel Parking Methods
Self-parking is another option. If you’ve never done something like this, you might be hesitant. It’s safe to say that your self-parking car will perform as well as, if not better than, a human.
If you can’t afford it and you’re still nervous about parallel parking, don’t worry. Taking your time and parking carefully is not unlawful. Besides, taking a few extra seconds to double-check your spacing will not get you arrested.
Additionally, you might ask a bystander or a friend to watch your vehicle as you park. The second set of eyes will guarantee that you don’t bump into other vehicles without causing traffic to be slowed down.
Pulling Out of a Parallel Parking Spot
Fortunately, getting from a parallel parking position is a lot simpler than getting into one in the first place.
Here are the directions to follow:
- Start by checking that your wheels are parallel. Keep an eye on your mirrors and your right shoulder as you slowly reverse toward the car in front of you. Don’t go too far back when you’re backing up.
- Tilt your head and utilize your mirrors to keep an eye out for other drivers, bikers, and pedestrians as they approach your car.
- Using your rear-view mirror, keep an eye out for any risks as you signal to enter the traffic lane.
- Turn your head toward your left and steer left as soon as it is safe to proceed. Ensure you can clear the automobile ahead of you by looking towards the front side of your vehicle.
- Turn around and glance behind your left shoulder to see if there are any dangers. When it is secure to do so, move forward and take your place in the traffic lane.
- Play it safe if you aren’t sure. Avoid hitting the car in front of or behind you. When in doubt about how much room you have left, you can always put the car in park if traffic permits.
- Avoid parking near a curb if you have wide “low-profile” tires and attractive wheels or hubcaps.
- When driving, always keep the wheel in motion, even if it is just a tiny bit forward or backward. As a result, your steering components will not be put under unnecessary strain.
- More than a few seconds spent holding the wheel in an aggressive turn can harm the power steering system.
Even though parallel parking is one of the most feared driving skills, it can be super easy once you understand how it works.
Parallel parking is more difficult than both perpendicular parking and angle parking, but like everything else, you can learn it with practice. With the parallel parking tips in this post, you’ll perfect your driving skills.
Do you want to know how to parallel park with the help of a driving instructor? Enroll for driving lessons at our school today.