If you have been driving cars for some time, you know that there are signs that you need to pull over immediately. Maybe it’s a sound you hear, a weird movement, or just a feeling that you need to slow down and pull over to check something out. Most often than not, these moments reward you with the relief of knowing you prevented a bigger accident from happening because you pulled over.
But if you are pretty new to driving or driving a new car, this sense might not be as developed, or you may not be able to identify the car’s quirks. So to help you out (or to refresh your knowledge), here is the list of the signs you need to pull over immediately.
5 signs you need to pull over immediately
Lack of visibility
If you want to drive safely, you need to see what is in front of you. Just imagine, you are driving a 3000-plus pound vehicle traveling at 65 miles an hour. This means you need at least 316 feet to get your car into a complete stop – and this is during ideal conditions.
Visibility can be hampered by several reasons – fog, rain, mud or dirt, a broken windshield, and snow/ice. The thing is, if you feel like you can’t see well (or at all), you should pull over and fix the problem or wait for the weather to change before charging on.
A loud noise
Nothing good is ever going to come out of a loud or sudden noise that comes up while driving. A car in good condition will make no loud or sudden noise, so you need to pull over when you hear something. In the best-case scenario, you just hit a rock that ricocheted or hit a bump.
Worst case, one of your spark plugs is now nowhere to be seen. What you need to do is to pull over, do a quick check of the engine and the under-chassis to see if anything is loose, hanging, or missing.
Seeing your temperature or oil light on
There are several lights on your dashboard that can tell you what condition your car is in. Of all these lights, there are two that can signify that your car is about to incur a big repair bill within minutes. These two lights are the temperature and oil lights. When they turn on, it means your engine is overheating, or you are losing oil pressure. Once they go on, stop and pull over right away.
Don’t even think about driving another mile “to see how far I can still go.” The damage caused by low oil pressure and overheating can amount to thousands. Sure, you might need to drive a little bit to get to a safer area before calling a tow truck but don’t push your luck.
A weird smell
We all know how our cars smell like, and if you are traveling with people, then there are a few kinds of smells you are already anticipating during a drive. However, when you do get hit by a weird smell that can’t be traced back to somebody’s armpits or dinner, then you should pull over ASAP.
Again, it could be anything, but it could also be your catalytic converter telling you that something is wrong. Most of the more common smells that should initiate a stop include the smell of burnt wire insulation or a gas leak.
Smoke and fire
If your car is smoking and if you see fire, then you should stop and pull over as soon as you can. You can also stop and get out right away as long as it is safe to do so (eg. you are driving on a remote country road with no one in sight).
Smoke or fire indicates something is already burning within your car, so it is in your best interest to stay away. At this point, you may need to call the fire department to help you put it out.
Call T3 Atlanta For All Your Car Problems
If you have pulled over due to the situations and signs mentioned above, don’t hesitate to give T3 Atlanta a call. We’ll get your car to tip-top shape in no time. We specialize in servicing Nissan, Toyota, Lexus, and Infiniti cars. Reach out to us, and we’ll take care of you and your car right away.