Stage 2: Garage Parking
Location: Garage & Driveway
Length: 20-25 minutes
Any driving task that is performed multiple times in a day must become second nature to new drivers.
One task that most of us don’t think about is pulling in and out of the garage. If we’re lucky, most of us do this two times a day without causing any damage to our car, garage, golf clubs, bikes, or those really important boxes that have been collecting dust for the past two years.
Here’s how you can practice garage parking with your new driver:
- Stand outside while your teen practices pulling in and out of your empty garage.
- Help them determine how far to pull in. You can give them landmarks inside your garage as guides. You can also hang tennis balls from a string or you can use other garage parking aids such as the Park ‘n Place. On a side note, I’ve never been able to get any of those so-called laser-guided systems to work properly.
- Have them get out of the car and see how well they did. Only with repeated practice can your teen gain a spatial awareness of the car.
Note: Most teen’s tendency is to leave too much room on the driver’s side of the car.
If your driveway requires a turn in order to pull into the garage, you’ll want to allow your teen to experiment with different turning points. With my garage, there is a seam in the concrete which provides a perfect marker for when it’s time to crank the wheel as far to the left as possible.
- Once your teen is able to pull in and out of the garage without needing your help from outside the car, hop in and let them prove their skills.
- After performing garage parking “solo”, you can increase the difficulty by putting another car in the garage (assuming you have a two or three-car garage). We recommend that you return to an outside vantage point for their first non-empty garage entry.
- If you have multiple cars, have your teen practice with all of them.
Continue on to Mix up the Cars