If you do any amount of city driving, you may be putting more wear on your vehicle than you realize.

Stopping and starting can be quite taxing on most cars. Highway driving will typically mean one cruising speed, city driving on the other hand requires constant speeding up and slowing down. The result is that a city-driven car’s engine is constantly working, as are the brakes and the transmission.

Stop and Go Driving

How does it affect your car?   

Frequently stopping and starting will put more strain on your brakes, especially so if you do a lot of hard stops. Due to frequent braking, inner city cars will wear out their brakes more often than cars with more highway mileage. A car with damaged brakes is not a safe car.

What can you do about it?

You should get your brakes inspected frequently; at every oil change is a great time to do it. This routine check can save you time by avoiding unscheduled repairs and downtime.

If you are in the habit of hard braking, you should also consider changing your driving habits. Try to minimize braking by following the car ahead of you at a greater distance so those hard stops are not needed.

Car Idling

City drivers usually find themselves idling more often than other drivers because of the large amount of traffic.

How does it affect your car?

Slow moving or stopped traffic can result in low airflow through your vehicle’s radiator. This may put your engine cooling system to the test, especially if you have low or dirty coolant, a poor drive belt condition, or weak hoses. This can put your engine at risk of overheating and may leave you as the one stranded in a traffic jam.

What can you do about it?

If you can avoid heavy traffic, that is your best bet. If you are unable to stay out of the thick of things, you’ll have to be more diligent in performing auto maintenance and have your vehicle’s cooling system inspected regularly.

Need more safety tips? Check out my posts on Why it’s important to rotate your tires, How to change a flat tire, and don’t forget to check out my Vehicle Preparation For Different Climates — temperature does make a difference in how you treat your vehicle!

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