Getting behind the wheel of a new van for the first time can be intimidating, Vansdirect provides a list of 10 tips to help you when you first drive an LCV!
Who can drive a new van?
With only a regular UK driving licence required to be able to drive a vehicle up to 3.5-tonnes (LCV), it is feasible for people who have only driven cars to get behind the wheel of any new van weighing 3.5-tonnes or under with no specialist van driving training.
Here are our top 10 tips for first time van drivers:
- Check tyre pressure – Particularly crucial if you’re carrying a heavy or large load. Check the pressure at the beginning of your journey and also at consistent intervals during particularly long journeys.
- Adjust your seat and take in surroundings – Once in the driver’s seat, take a minute to familiarise yourself with your surroundings and adjust your seat so that controls are ideally positioned. With no rear-view window you need to ensure that your wing mirrors are adjusted so you have the best possible visibility of the road behind.
- Familiarise yourself with new van functions – Make sure you are aware where your important functions including headlights and windscreen wipers are, as you’re likely to need them.
- Know the dimensions of your new van – This will help you particularly when parking, especially when entering multi-storey car parks with height restrictions and when looking if a parking space is big enough for your van. You should leave plenty of space between the van and other vehicles to open the doors without causing damage.
- Make sure the area behind you is clear when reversing – If it is possible, it may be best for you to have someone standing behind the van to guide you, if not you should reverse slowly while consistently checking your mirrors.
- Know your route before leaving – This will help you avoid treacherous paths and low bridges amongst other potential challenges.
- Know your van’s speed limits – Although these can vary for different types of vans these are usually: 30mph for built-up areas, 50mph for single carriageways, 60mph for dual carriageways and the customary 70mph for motorways. You may wish to double check your particular van however!
- Be careful when overtaking other vehicles – Overtaking is more hazardous in a van due to reduced visibility. Ensure you have a thorough view of the side mirrors before doing so.
- Secure heavy loads – This is vitally important to avoid potential damages, this will also help to ensure you and your passengers are safe if you have to suddenly stop.
- Be considerate of other drivers – From not pulling out in front of other road users, to letting people join the road on motorways, consideration for others is very important when driving.
New van finance
So there you have it, our top 10 tips for first time van drivers! At Vansdirect we provide useful guides and the latest van news with our blog, we also have a wide range of new vans for sale, together with cheap van finance options including van leasing, contract hire and hire purchase we can find the perfect new van deal for your requirements! Looking for a new van? Call us on 0800 169 69 95 or enquire online and we’ll get back to you asap, we also offer cars!