Most of us have experienced this situation: as we prepare for our driver’s license test, our father sitting next to us, we’re at the steering wheel, eyes shining with nervous anticipation, trying to fully press the clutch pedal. It’s hard to imagine a more stressful moment. However, the reality is that many driving schools struggle to move away from rote learning. As a result, we often don’t receive enough information about the internal workings of vehicles or why we perform certain actions when learning how to drive.
For instance, we know how to start a car and how to pull away, but we often don’t learn the details. The role of the clutch can be a source of confusion at this point.
What is the Role of the Clutch?
If we look inside a car, we see a regular relationship between ignition and the engine. The clutch pedal plays an irreplaceable role in between these two.
When a car is in neutral, pressing the clutch pedal starts the ignition. Even though the primary function of the clutch is to provide a smooth driving experience, fully pressing the pedal brings the car to a neutral position. This is the basis of the theory.
The Effects of Pressing the Clutch Pedal
Pressing the clutch pedal completely disconnects the transmission from the ignition, resulting in less drag. When the clutch is not pressed, running the vehicle in neutral creates much more drag.
While there won’t be any impact felt on the main shaft of the engine, all components of the transmission will operate, consequently causing drag. These uncontrolled pressure levels vary depending on the model of the vehicle.
For example, in some models, a pressure of hundreds of kilograms may occur, while in others, this amount can rise up to tons. Consider a car operating at only 1 horsepower. Here, while a high-pressure explosion can occur, a 100 horsepower engine won’t react much to this pressure. A starter motor at 1 horsepower may not resist this pressure and may start to smoke one day.
What is the Best Starting Method for Manual Transmission Vehicles?
In manual vehicles, it is not necessary to press the clutch pedal to start the vehicle when the gear is in neutral. Whether the clutch is pressed or not, pressing the clutch pedal prolongs the process and draws more energy from the battery.
If the vehicle’s battery is weak, pressing the clutch pedal may prevent the vehicle from starting. Today, many new vehicles require pressing the clutch pedal to start the vehicle as a safety precaution. This is particularly common in Japanese cars.
To ensure a longer vehicle life, it’s important to step away from traditional teachings, delve into the details, and understand why we perform certain actions. But try not to argue too much with your father. At this point, having a deeper understanding about the proper use of the clutch and starting the vehicle can extend the life of your vehicle and make your driving experience safer and more comfortable.
When you understand everything correctly, you can be less stressed during your driving test or your daily driving. So, knowing whether or not it’s harmful to press the clutch when starting your car can help you become a more conscious driver. Therefore, take some time to understand this topic better and consult an expert if necessary. Do what’s best for your car and your driving safety. Remember, knowledge is always power, and a conscious driver is always a safer driver. So, learn the proper use of the clutch and other car components so that you can maximize your driving experience. Happy driving!