Driving on Hills - Do's and Don'ts!!


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TSIVipul

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Excellent effort Vipul, Kudos for taking the time and effort and bringing such gems on board!
Thanks a lot buddy. Effort!!??!!..naa, writing it all was actually fun(it is something that gives me satisfaction) but yes, time consuming it was!!:stupid:

Very good and helpful writeup.
Many hill roads has many Tunnels, so please add points related to 'Handling Tunnels' .
Thanks buddy, in terms of tunnel driving all I know is - 'Lights ON and drive' like you do in night drives.
Instead any suggestions from experienced members are welcome any time.
 
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TSIVipul

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Preparing your car for hilly drives:

Going for that yet-an-another hilly trip is a different thing while going for a high altitude hilly trip is different, and hence if you are going for such a trip then you need to prepare your car as well as yourself too for it, what those preparations are, let’s see:
  • Check for any kind of leakages in the car and if you find ne, then better get it rectified before going for the trip. Also get your car thoroughly serviced with cleaning of filters etc thoroughly done.
  • It’s always beneficial to carry extra spares too because at such altitudes it’s not a Mickey mouse job searching for an A.S.S. or a mechanic and hence carrying extra spares like bulbs etc are recommended.
  • Be extra cautious with the spare tyre and better you carry a good spare tyre and if possible then carry a puncture repair kit as well as inflator too with you.
  • Though covering the grille with a fine cloth(like dupatta or saree which can filter out dust) is advised if the environment is dusty(which most of the high altitudes are) and even better will be if you carry a spare air filter because in dusty conditions it is easy for the air filter to get clogged and hence get your engine choked.
  • Better to also check on altering air fuel ratio because at higher altitudes the air density is less and the standard ratio isn't efficient(hence more of black smoke seen typically).

For driving in tunnels:
  • Simple rule: Lights ON and drive.
  • Never use hazard lights until you are stopped.
  • Beware of the vehicles suddenly slowing down as many drivers have the tendency of slowing down suddenly as soon as they enter the tunnel.
 
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Trust me Vipul, you have covered all the points. If i will try to add anything, that will be a remix version of your mentioned points. :lol!:
This thread is really helpful for us, even i am driving in hills from last thirteen years which includes driving in some real bad roads and in bad weather too. I have also learned some few more points which will be used while driving in hills.
Once again thanks for creating a wonderful thread full of knowledge...
 
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Great work Vipul.

Very useful information for the people. I am sure such threads are important for all of us to understand what exactly happens on hills. Indeed it is a different ball game altogether.
 
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TSIVipul

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Trust me Vipul, you have covered all the points. If i will try to add anything, that will be a remix version of your mentioned points. :lol!:
[:D]
This thread is really helpful for us, even i am driving in hills from last thirteen years which includes driving in some real bad roads and in bad weather too. I have also learned some few more points which will be used while driving in hills.
Once again thanks for creating a wonderful thread full of knowledge...
Well, all I have done is just writing all I was taught(by my chauffy) and have experienced, if t fits well then [:D] rest learning is a never ending process.
Adding to it, I should pass a word of thanks to Iron Rock for providing very valuable suggestions on high altitude driving, bad weather driving, snow driving etc.

Great work Vipul.

Very useful information for the people. I am sure such threads are important for all of us to understand what exactly happens on hills. Indeed it is a different ball game altogether.
Thanks buddy, BTW I am yet to hear your experience from your first hill drive that you did some months back.
 
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If it's your first trip on a particular ghat, it helps to get some information from someone who's been there earlier, especially on first gear turns / inclines.

You can work your way out of second gear turns, if you get caught out. It's the turns where you NEED to be in first gear that will be a problem if you miss it for some reason and are in a higher gear.

While approaching a 2 lane tunnel, expect heavier vehicles to be more towards the center than to be strictly in their lanes.
 
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Excellent work buddy and as usual another rocking and very useful thread from you.

Definitely going to help a lot of people planning their first trip to mountain regions and other drivers as well.

keep up the good work[clap]
 
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Thank You Vipul for starting this fantastic thread [:D][drive].
Preparing your car for hilly drives:

[*]Though covering the grille with a fine cloth(like dupatta or saree which can filter out dust) is advised if the environment is dusty(which most of the high altitudes are) and even better will be if you carry a spare air filter because in dusty conditions it is easy for the air filter to get clogged and hence get your engine choked.
I've a small doubt here .

If you cover front grill with piece of fine cloth or piece of sari it might have adverse effect on cooling for engine ..? as Sari may be obstructing the Air flow going thru Radiator also ?

Also give some inputs on Tyre selection and Gear Shifting technic for Downhill .

Suppose am going bit fast in (4th gear ) on steep down-slop and i need to brake and then downshift to proper gear (3 or 2nd gear) , how should i do it Quick and in correct manner to avoid any gearbox damages ?
 
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Thank You Vipul for starting this fantastic thread [:D][drive].
I've a small doubt here .

If you cover front grill with piece of fine cloth or piece of sari it might have adverse effect on cooling for engine ..? as Sari may be obstructing the Air flow going thru Radiator also ?

Also give some inputs on Tyre selection and Gear Shifting technic for Downhill .

Suppose am going bit fast in (4th gear ) on steep down-slop and i need to brake and then downshift to proper gear (3 or 2nd gear) , how should i do it Quick and in correct manner to avoid any gearbox damages ?
@ Abhiwar: As far as my knowledge & experience, its vice-versa for uphill and downhill drive, like- if you drives at 2nd year to upside you should drive with same gear while towards down slope. Driving in proper gears will help you to drive confidently as one need it while driving in hills. [;)] Avoid driving fast in downhill, specially in non metaled roads as brakes will not help much because of improper grip on road. Hope you will get my point.
 
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One more important point i would like to add here is:
Avoid taking your car to extreme road corner while passing other vehicle or while parking as you never know when a small land slide can happen which can give you a big surprise specially in rainy season. Similarly do not park your car under a cliff or tree as i am one of the victim of it, and the price paid was a broken windshield. [cry]. Its a small point but i hope it will help you all someday while your adventurous trip towards hills.
 
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If it's your first trip on a particular ghat, it helps to get some information from someone who's been there earlier, especially on first gear turns / inclines.

You can work your way out of second gear turns, if you get caught out. It's the turns where you NEED to be in first gear that will be a problem if you miss it for some reason and are in a higher gear.
Right you are, many times we get such steep hairpins that we are forced to engage first gear in them and even more joyful is that when you press the clutch, your car gets stalled or stops at the moment and then you have to either back off and then move again on such turns or move ahead from the same spot, my choice is always second one.
While approaching a 2 lane tunnel, expect heavier vehicles to be more towards the center than to be strictly in their lanes.
Thanks for your valuable input buddy.

Excellent work buddy and as usual another rocking and very useful thread from you.

Definitely going to help a lot of people planning their first trip to mountain regions and other drivers as well.

keep up the good work
Thanks buddy, I will feel humbles if anyone gets any kind of help from this. BTW, why don't you share your experience of snow driving and tips for that because I guess you have experienced a lot of it?

Thank You Vipul for starting this fantastic thread .
I've a small doubt here .

If you cover front grill with piece of fine cloth or piece of sari it might have adverse effect on cooling for engine ..? as Sari may be obstructing the Air flow going thru Radiator also ?
I have wrote a 'fine' cloth, the cloth which will allow air to pass through it but won't let the dust pass.

Also give some inputs on Tyre selection and Gear Shifting technic for Downhill .
Tyre selection is simple: Keep ones with good grip.
Gear selection is even simpler: Keep low.

Suppose am going bit fast in (4th gear ) on steep down-slop and i need to brake and then downshift to proper gear (3 or 2nd gear) , how should i do it Quick and in correct manner to avoid any gearbox damages ?
Engine brake then brake then shift down repeat it same way if you have enough time and if you are in hurry then simply shift down to second with light braking or apply heavy brakes and shift to first, nothing will happen to box but yes, first brake and then shift.

@ Abhiwar: As far as my knowledge & experience, its vice-versa for uphill and downhill drive, like- if you drives at 2nd year to upside you should drive with same gear while towards down slope. Driving in proper gears will help you to drive confidently as one need it while driving in hills. Avoid driving fast in downhill, specially in non metaled roads as brakes will not help much because of improper grip on road. Hope you will get my point.
+100..

One more important point i would like to add here is:
Avoid taking your car to extreme road corner while passing other vehicle or while parking as you never know when a small land slide can happen which can give you a big surprise specially in rainy season. Similarly do not park your car under a cliff or tree as i am one of the victim of it, and the price paid was a broken windshield. [cry]. Its a small point but i hope it will help you all someday while your adventurous trip towards hills.
Thanks for the word of advise.

One more: One needs to be very careful on the roads which have no sidewalls, especially during night drives and must be extremely careful if there is fog or rainy night or even day. Why? Because many times you just can't see the road turning and it seems like the road is going straight. I have read of a lot of accidents only because there were no sidewalls and driver wasn't able to judge if the road is turning on time.
 
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Thread Starter #30

TSIVipul

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Actually i did put up a post but it's in another thread, here is the link:
http://www.theautomotiveindia.com/f...ips-gurus-beginners-like-me-5.html#post236601
Thanks for putting up the info buddy, now I am adding it all here too for the purpose of forming a complete guide. It's really fantastic set of info which will really help a lot in driving in the said conditions.

Makes For Excellent Reading!!! [thumbsup]
Thanks buddy, I am humbled!![:)]

Quoting the post by our member Singh890 from an another thread. Without any doubt, very much valuable piece of tips it is:

I am no guru but have been driving for almost 12-13 years now and around 5 years in snow as well. So I will try to add some tips for driving in snow. I hope it helps our fellow members and guests who have to drive in snow.

I have been in US for almost 5 years now and it was here when I drove in snow, ice, sleet andsnow storms for the first time in my life. And yes these tips have helped me a lot to outlive in these bad weather conditions.

First advice from my side for driving in snow or really bad weather conditions is do not drive in these conditions. But if you still have to then,

Preparation:
  • Check you tire thread. Tires should have good amount of thread and if you planning a trip where it’s all snow and ice then try replacing your tires to Winter Tires. Don’t get fooled by all weather tires. Why because they are not really meant for deep snow and icy road conditions driving. They are basically meant for summer, rain, winters, loose gravel etc.
  • Check all your lights and keep your windshields clean all the time. Lights are very very important since they play a major role when the visibility is low and the oncoming traffic can only sense you by lights.
  • Always be extra careful while driving on bridges. WHY? Because bridges and overpasses get frozen very quickly, hence creating icy conditions.
  • Don’t think that you are the king of the road and will sustain any condition if you are driving a 4wd, AWD vehicle. Because if there are icy conditions then even a heavy SUV equipped with 4wd option will fail and skid. Even the big Semai trucks full of load can skid, so forget about a SUV.
  • Always drive slow and keep a good amount of distance from the vehicle in front of you. I would say double the distance which you keep in normal driving conditions.
  • Always keep a shovel and a scrapper in your car and if planning a long trip then some sand, salt and leather gloves (because they won’t get wet unlike the woolen ones).
  • And above all sufficient fuel, A full tank will save you time and will increase the weight as well.
  • Another tip if you don’t have a scrapper and you have ice on your windshield, use your ATM or credit card to remove the ice.
  • Keep plenty of drinking water, food, extra clothes, good flash light and mobile with a charged battery (would be nice if you carry car charger). These things will come in handy if you get stuck somewhere.

Problems encountered while driving:
  • Now if you are driving and all of a sudden your car starts skidding. First thing remove your foot from the accelerator and don’t brake hard, if you do it will make your car skid even more and faster. Why, because aggressive acceleration will make your tires loose traction. So what you do is take your foot from the accelerator, steer in the direction in which your car is skidding and press brakes slowly then release them, again press and then release. Keep doing this and parallel you might have to steer left and right with it to regain traction or until your car stops.
    Try to gain control over your speed by shifting down first rather than using brakes or with minimal usage of brakes.
  • Worst Case Scenario: If you see that you are literally loosing the traction and you have incoming traffic or an obstacle and you think you may collide then in that case the best thing to do is ether to take your car off the road or use the side railings to stop your car. I know it might damage the car with some dents but it’s better than colliding with the oncoming traffic. So main point here is to take support of something to stop your car.
  • Now if you have ABS, you'll be able to tell that ABS has triggered by feeling a pulsing sensation through the brake pedal. If this has occurred do not 'pump' the brakes – rather keep a firm pressure on the pedal for maximum effectiveness. You might feel something is wrong with your brakes or tires but be patient, it is supposed to be that way.
  • If you get stuck in the snow please never do wheel spin as it will only create more trouble for you as your tires will get deeper in the snow. Come out of the car and don’t forget to put on your emergency lights (Blinkers) on before stepping out of the car which will alert other cars on the road. So come out use the shovel to remove the snow around the tire and put some sand, gravel or salt so that your tire can get grip.
    Move your steering left and right. Take your car forward and then take it reverse in the same direction or opposite direction, repeat this couple of times and you should be good.
    Also change your gears sooner than usual because it will reduce the torque hence you can retain the traction.
    If you have 4-5 people in the car then the best thing to do is you take the driver seat and put the car in 1 gear or in D mode (Drive for automatic version) and let other people push it and you accelerate the car, can be bit hard as well (depending on the situation). Car will come out.
  • Now the most dangerous thing is BLACK ICE. Black ice is transparent hence very hard to notice while driving, but you might feel it as your tires will lose traction all of a sudden and regain it back. All this happens really quickly but you will come to know if you are a sedate driver. If you encounter that be extra careful, reduce your speed and keep checking the road by pushing your brakes frequently. And if you feel that it’s all over. STOP, do not drive. Park your car somewhere safe. You cannot fight with Black ICE even the best 4wd option can’t.
    The reason I said to STOP was because let’s say you keep driving and the rods starts declining, then in that situation you won’t be able to stop your car and your car and this can be really dreadful. Same goes with incline, your car will keep sliding down until and unless you reach a point where the road is even, straight or you hit something which can hold you.

Below are some videos just to give you an example, that how bad is Black IcE and what it is capable of doing.

Black ice - YouTube

20 Car Pile-up set to Benny Hill - YouTube

ICY CONDITIONS CAUSE SPINOUTS CAUGHT ON TAPE! - YouTube
 
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