It goes without saying that braking is a core skill of driving, but sadly, many drivers today simply do not know how to do so properly and safely.
Bad driving habits, anti-lock braking systems (ABS) and driving without due care and attention seem to have resulted in a loss of the skill of braking.
In reality, knowing how to bring a car to a half quickly and safely is one of the single most important aspects of driving a vehicle.
For learner drivers, braking can be tricky to master.
You may find yourself pressing too firmly and jolting the car as a result or just struggling to get used to the handling of the car when slowing down.
Picking up these core skills at an early stage in your driver education is vital.
It will help you to feel more comfortable on the road and more confident in performing other manoeuvres and driving on different types of roads.
There are two types of braking that this guide will look at.
This is a slower and safer form of braking that you will use as you’re bringing the car to a stop in general conditions, such as when you’re approaching traffic lights or at a junction.
Emergency Stop Braking:
An emergency stop is used when an immediate danger or obstacle is in the road ahead and you need to stop immediately.
Both of the above types of braking have different techniques, both of which we will look at on this page.
Being able to stop your vehicle quickly, smoothly and confidently is a given if you’re going to pass your driving test.
Therefore, this guide will teach you the techniques required to do so.
Stopping safely can prevent road traffic accidents, give you more control when driving built-up areas and also give you a means of stopping in case of emergency situations.
Once you are confident with the skill of bringing a car to a stop, the rest of the skills required in learning to drive will also feel much more achievable.
Our guide on how to master braking is broken down in to the following areas:
We will first explain the step-by-step process of progressive braking, the safest way to slow your vehicle and bring it to a stop if required.
Emergency stops are necessary when an obstruction occurs immediately ahead and you need to bring your vehicle to a complete and immediate stop.
This technique will differ slightly depending on whether the car you are driving has ABS brakes or not.
We will describe the differences below.
Emergency Stop With ABS Braking System:
Emergency Stop Without ABS Braking System:
These guides are a great starting point when you’re learning to drive and looking to pick up the technique of braking.
Practicing is absolutely key.
Do so as often as you can, even if that means finding a large plot of open space to rehearse the emergency stop routines.
Here are a few more hints and tips to consider when braking:
Knowing what constitutes a safe stopping distance and being familiar with how to judge this is important when it comes to braking, so take the time to learn those early on in your driver education.
Also, the weather can play a significant role in the effectiveness of methods of braking, not to mention how safe each technique is.
Take the time to read about this ahead of the winter, for example, as it’s a very important part of learning to drive safely.
There are so many different scenarios which will force you to slow down in your car, whether you are progressively slowing or using an emergency stop technique.
Each has its own important advantages
It’s good to remember that when using a progressive braking technique, this is going to give drivers around you the most time to react to your actions.
If they’re behind, they will have time to slow down themselves without causing an accident.
In poor weather, this is particularly important.
It’s also important to keep in mind that maintaining a safe stopping distance is also crucial for the purposes of braking, be it progressive or in an emergency stop situation.