Driving a car comes with a lot of responsibility, but driving a classic car comes with even more. Not only do you want to avoid hiring an attorney after a serious accident that injures you and totals your car, you don’t want to put unnecessary wear and tear on your vehicle either.
There are some things every driver should do on the road, but there are also some tips that are especially important to classic car drivers. When you follow them, you can enjoy your classic car for many years to come.
Get the Right Insurance Policy
It starts with getting the right insurance policy. If you have never owned a classic car before, you may be surprised to learn that classic cars require a different kind of insurance. Because they aren’t new, but they are still valuable, you have to look for a classic car insurer who is willing and able to cover your vehicle.
Certain eligibility requirements must be met because policies take into account the fact that classic cars gain value over time rather than losing value, like most cars. They also come with mileage restrictions, since the vehicle already has so many miles. Most policies assume that you will be using another vehicle for regular daily driving.
Although it may sound complicated, it’s important to make sure you get a good insurance policy so your car is protected.
Know How to Drive It
It sounds obvious that you would have to know how to drive your car, whether it’s a classic or not, but learning how to drive a classic car can be a challenge.
Older cars are less intuitive to operate than newer cars, and certain features may not be where you expect them to be. There are no backup cameras, lane assist, or warnings. Some old cars have quirks that you have to learn in order to operate them properly, you may have to step on the brake harder than you expect, and you may have to learn how to drive a stick shift.
To gain confidence behind the wheel, practice driving the car in an empty parking lot. You can also consider taking a driving class with an instructor who is will to teach you in your own vehicle.
Practice Defensive Driving
Practicing defensive driving is important no matter what kind of vehicle you drive, but it’s especially important if you’re driving a classic car. The last thing you want is to get into an accident driving a vehicle that is nearly impossible to replace.
A few defensive driving tips you’ll want to follow when you drive your classic car include things like:
- Never tailgate
- Drive as smoothly as you can
- Always drive the speed limit
- Drive without distractions
- Come to complete stops
Don’t Skip Maintenance or Repairs
Vehicle maintenance is extremely important, but it’s also one of those things that’s easy to put off. It’s easy to put off getting an oil change for a few weeks, and as long as your car is running just fine, it doesn’t seem like a big deal to ignore the check engine light until you can find time to take your vehicle into the shop.
It’s not a good idea to skip or postpone maintenance and repairs in any car, but it’s extremely important if you’re driving a classic car. A classic car has parts that can be decades old, and when they aren’t maintained, they can break easily, and replacing parts in a classic car can be costly.
Take your vehicle in for regular oil changes to a mechanic who knows classic cars and have them do a general inspection to catch issues before they turn into serious problems.
Keep It Clean
It’s important to keep your car clean. Rust is the result if you don’t, and a rusty classic car isn’t as valuable or as fun to drive. Not to mention, rust can compromise essential parts that make your car run smoothly.
Preventing rust means rinsing away sand and salt if you live in a cold climate, but other things cause rust too. If you live near the ocean, you should have your car washed regularly. It’s also important if your car has scratches or other areas where metal is exposed.
Driving a classic car is the same as driving a modern car in some ways, but different in others. You can cruise the road in style in your classic car when you take care of it with the tips on this list.