Teenagers generally can’t wait to get their license and first car. That’s natural!
Getting these things feels like freedom. For the parents, though, it can feel like stress.
That stress comes from worrying about their safety and making sure they’re teen knows what they’re doing. There’s a lot involved when it comes to driving for the first time.
Sure, they need to drive safely, but do they know how to maintain it? Follow these four tips to help your teen take care of their vehicle.
Have Them Master Basic Car Repairs
Before your teen is allowed to drive, he or she should be able to change a tire, top off fluids correctly and look for signs of body or glass damage.
Your teen should make it a point to wash the car monthly to prevent salt, pollen or dirt buildup from ruining the car’s finish. By showing they can responsibly take care of the family car and they have an adequate amount of respect for it can prove they’re ready for the next level: driving.
What Happens if the Windshield Chips or Cracks?
If there are chips or cracks in the windshield, your teen should be responsible for replacing or repairing the glass right away. This can best be done by having it looked at by an auto glass repair company such as Martin Glass Co.
In most cases (depending upon your deductible), the cost of the repair will be covered by insurance. Of course, your teen may be financially dependent on you so the money for this might be coming out of your pocket.
To teach responsibility, though, sit down with your teen to discuss the cause of the chips or cracks. If you can determine it was preventable, then it might be wise to have your teen pay for part or all of it out of their allowance or part-time job.
What Happens If the Brakes Start Squeaking?
Your teen should understand what it means if the brakes start squeaking. Typically, it means the brake pads need to be replaced soon.
Failure to do so could result in the need for new pads and rotors, which could cost hundreds of dollars. The cost of those repairs is generally not covered by insurance.
Make Sure That Your Teen Understands What Dashboard Lights Mean
It’s critical your teen driver knows what the dashboard lights mean especially the warning lights. Ideally, your teen will take the car to an auto service center to have the issue diagnosed.
From there, they should either be able to make basic fixes or know where to go for help.
While driving is fun and exciting for a young person, doing so safely requires both knowledge of how cars work and experience operating them. Therefore, parents should make sure their teen drivers appreciate what it takes to be a safe driver and keep their cars in good running condition for as long as they operate them.
Putting your teen behind the wheel for the first time has been known to provoke panic attacks in parents. It seems like just yesterday, the same youngster who was awkwardly taking their first steps is now pressing those same feet to your car’s gas pedal. Yikes!
Driving a car is serious stuff. A full third of teenage deaths were due to vehicle accidents, according to dosomething.org. Learn how to instill safe driving skills in your teenager.