driving car on empty road

Driving Again After Not Driving for a While: Re-educating Yourself for Road Safety

  • Starting small and gradually increasing driving complexity can help you regain confidence after a break.
  • Refresher courses can update you on current traffic laws and safe driving methods, enhancing driving competence.
  • Driving with a trained professional can help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and create a personalized training plan.
  • Regularly checking car components like tires, brakes, lights, and windshield wipers ensures safe driving conditions.
  • Adequate sleep aids in maintaining focus, alertness, and decision-making abilities while driving.

Driving is a crucial part of modern life. However, sometimes people need to take a break from driving for different reasons, such as relocating to a new place, medical reasons, etc. When it is time to get behind the wheel after a break of several months or even years, it can be challenging to regain former driving confidence and capability. This is why it is essential to take some time to re-educate yourself for road safety before getting back on the road. This blog post will explore ways to learn how to drive again safely.

Start Small

If you haven’t driven for a while, starting small is essential. Begin by driving in a less populated area, like a quiet neighborhood. A more peaceful road with fewer cars will give you more time to adjust to driving again without the stress of navigating heavy traffic. Gradually build up your skills and progressively increase your driving distance and complexity of travel.

Also, practice driving under different weather and lighting conditions to prepare for every eventuality. For example, if you live in an area with frequent rain, practice driving in the rain before venturing out on a longer journey. If you are uncomfortable driving in a particular situation, don’t push yourself and take an alternate route or wait until the conditions improve.

Enroll in a Refresher Course

Enrolling in a refresher course can be an incredible way to re-educate yourself for driving safely again. A refresher course focuses on any bad driving habits you may have picked up over the years, and it helps you identify the gaps in your knowledge. Refresher courses are structured to update you with current traffic laws, safe driving techniques, and road etiquette to make you a more confident and competent driver.

One way to do this is through an 8-hour online basic driver improvement course that covers everything from traffic laws to defensive driving techniques. It also includes videos, simulations, and quizzes, which help you retain the information better. These courses also provide a certificate upon completion, which can be helpful when applying for auto insurance or renewing your driver’s license.

Drive with a Trained Professional

A driving instructor assisting a driver from the passenger seat

Another way to re-educate yourself for road safety is to drive with a trained professional driving instructor for a few hours. A driving instructor can help you identify your weaknesses and strengths and develop a tailored training plan to fill the gaps in your driving knowledge. This could be particularly helpful if you have anxiety or other concerns about driving again.

Keep Your Car in Good Condition

Ensuring that your car is in good condition is also vital to relearning driving safety. Before hitting the road, make sure to check your vehicle thoroughly. Here are some tips:

Check your tires

A person checking the tire pressure of a car

The tires should have enough depth and inflation. Check the tire pressure regularly and remember to rotate your tires according to the manufacturer’s recommendation. If your tires are not in good condition, consider replacing them, as they can significantly affect your driving.

Check the brakes

Checking the brakes should be one of the top priorities. Ensure the brakes are working properly and your car has enough brake fluid. If anything seems off, get a mechanic to take a look and fix any necessary problems before you start driving again.

Check the lights

Your headlights and brake lights should be functioning correctly. Replace any burnt-out bulbs and check for any lens cracks or other damage. This will ensure you are visible to other drivers on the road and able to navigate low-light situations better.

Check the windshield wipers

Make sure the windshield wipers are clean and working properly to ensure clear vision during bad weather. Replace the wipers if necessary, and use a good quality windshield washer fluid to keep your vision clear.

Get Some Good Rest

Driving after not driving for a while can be mentally taxing. To be safe on the road, getting a good night’s rest before getting behind the wheel is essential. Sleep deprivation can cause loss of concentration, reaction time, and poor decision-making abilities while driving. Therefore, getting enough rest is crucial for your focus and alertness while driving.

Driving again after taking a break from the wheel can be a daunting experience. But re-educating yourself about road safety by starting small, enrolling in a refresher course, driving with a trained professional, keeping your car in good condition, and getting some good rest, will help you regain your confidence behind the wheel. Remember to prioritize safety, be mindful of the rules of the road, and ensure you are physically and mentally capable of driving.


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