Reverse parallel parking or just ‘parallel parking’, is the process of parking a vehicle parallel to the roadside between two other parked vehicles. It’s a common parking technique used in urban areas with limited parking space.
Parallel parking may seem daunting, but with practice, anyone can master it. In this article, we’ll break down the process of parallel parking into simple steps that anyone can follow.
In this Article:
- Introduction to Parallel Parking
- Finding the Right Spot
- Preparing to Park
- Performing the Maneuver – 8 Simple Steps
- Final Adjustments
- Tips for Successful Parallel Parking
Finding the Right Spot
Well, you haven’t found a huge parking space to slide into, and your best option is to squeeze in between these two very expensive-looking cars. This is where reverse parallel parking can help. It is crucial for success.
Is the space at least one and a half times the length of your vehicle? Ensure the space is wide enough to accommodate your vehicle and avoid parking too close to driveways or intersections.
Preparing to Park
Before starting parallel parking, indicate your intention using your turn signal. Position your car parallel to the parked car in front of the space, leaving about two feet between the two vehicles. Align the rear bumpers of the two cars, then turn the steering wheel to the right. See the video for a more precise idea.
Performing the Reverse Parallel Parking Maneuver
As you slowly back up, keep an eye on the back of the car you’re parking behind. When the back of your car clears the rear bumper of the parked car, turn the steering wheel all the way to the left. Continue backing up until your car is at a 45-degree angle with the curb. Straighten the wheels by turning the steering wheel to the right.
1. Find a suitable parking spot:
Identify a space that is big enough for your car. Make sure it is legal to park there and that there are no obstructions or hazards that could cause damage to your vehicle.
2. Signal and stop beside the space:
Signal to the other drivers you intend to park using your turn signal. Pull up beside the space so that the rear of your car is lined up with the rear parked in front of the space.
Check your mirrors and look over your shoulder to ensure it is safe to reverse. Begin to reverse slowly while turning the steering wheel to the right. Aim to align the back of your car with the back of the car in front of the space.
4. Straighten the wheel:
Once your car is at a 45-degree angle to the curb, straighten your steering wheel and continue reversing. Keep an eye on your mirrors and the space in front of and behind your car to avoid hitting anything.
5. Turn the wheel left:
When the front of your car is clear of the vehicle parked in front of the space, turn your steering wheel to the left and continue reversing until your car is parallel to the curb.
6. Adjust your position:
Check that your car is parallel to the curb, and if necessary, adjust your position by pulling forward or reversing a little. Leave enough space between your vehicle and the cars in front and behind you.
7. Straighten the wheels:
Straighten your steering wheel and pull forward to centre your car in the space. Check your mirrors and surroundings before shifting into the ‘park’ position on your gear stick.
8. Final Adjustments
Pull forward to centre your car within the parking space. Make any necessary adjustments to ensure your vehicle is parallel to the curb and evenly spaced between the two parked cars.
Tips for Successful Reverse Parallel Parking
Practice makes perfect. Find an empty parking lot and practice parallel parking until you feel comfortable.
Use your mirrors and rearview camera to help guide you.
Take your time and go slow. Don’t rush the maneuver.
Be aware of your surroundings and watch for pedestrians and other cars.
Parallel parking can be a challenge, but with practice and patience, anyone can master it. Remember to take your time, be aware of your surroundings, and use the tips and techniques outlined in this article to make parallel parking a breeze.