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|12th March 2008, 13:44||#61|
Join Date: Feb 2008
I think I will go with Abhi's suggestion, to get the service and figure the rest for myself later. As it is I have a small car and the boot is full with my woofer and speakers .
Worse, I don't know anything about types of bulbs and fuses. What will I do with them.hehehe.
I will carry maruti on road service numbers card, that should fit in somewhere
|12th March 2008, 18:08||#63|
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mumbai, Scottsdale, AZ
1) should the tyre pressure be 2-3 psi higher or lower ? cuz my tyre guy fills it slightly lower (cold) cuz it will expand, so if its s'posed to be 33 for the wagon r, he makes it 30, and 28 in summer, i haven't had any problems with that so far...
2) if im travelling to remote places (like i usually am), i carry 2 litres of water per day for the three of us minimum, or 20 litres , whichever is more.
we buy the rest of the water on the way in big towns.
Last edited by naikpranav : 12th March 2008 at 18:12.
|13th March 2008, 09:10||#64|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA
Thanked: 27 Times
You will not realize any problems untill you have a tyre burst at high speed. Luckily you hadnt had that. Also by keep low psi in highways your tyre life is getting reduced as well.
I always carry a 20lit bottle in the boot if the trip distance/days are more. You also save lots of money rather than buying those bottles at 10-15rs/lit.
Last edited by akroy : 13th March 2008 at 09:12.
|4th April 2008, 10:30||#65|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Mar 2007
Thanked: 127 Times
I know that there a lot of people here on this forum who routinely go on long trips. But not me, although I would like to. This is because I consider 300-400 km to be better covered by train (Chandigarh or Jalandhar is where I go because of my wife's family there). In my nearly 186,000 km of car driving, I have not driven ever even 50 km outside Delhi!. However, I would like to make a start soon.
I would be grateful if people with long experience of out of town driving will help me address these fears (I am aware of the things to take and care when going out of town): These fears are in order of preference
1. Tiredness: I have an automatic, but does driving for 5-6 hrs causes tiredness, sore limbs, etc.
2. Breakdown fear: I do not even know to replace a tyre (+ve is that my car has tubeless).
3. Since the above 2 could be addressed to a large extent by an automatic and tubeless tyres, the remaining biggest fear is of loss of life and limbs because of high speeds and reckless driving (own and others). What do I do about this.
|4th April 2008, 12:22||#66|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2005
Thanked: 143 Times
1. In a car like the Corolla which is not only a breeze to drive but an AT too this should not be a factor at all. But it depends more on the driver than the car to be frank, I can drive 8-12 hours straight without a single break without any issues but know people who need a break every couple of hours or so just to relieve their fatigue. This is more or less dependent upon your stamina while driving & how used to you are in maintaining your concentration on the road without feeling tired. If you like cars & enjoy driving it helps a lot.
Best thing to do especially if you're on your first long distance drive is to take it easy & play it by the ear. Drive for a couple of hours & see how you feel, if you feel a little tired or cramped & feel the need to stretch your body then do so at the next dhaba/petrol pump. After all what is the hurry? And if you don't feel the need to stop then continue on your way till you feel the need to stop. However, if at any time you feel drowsy or sleepy stop IMMEDIATELY, even the slightest wink or dozing off can have dire consequences.
To ease the drive further carry some fluids & eatables in the car, Mints & Chewing gum help a lot & also carry your favourite music to pass your time. And whatever you do, don't be tense while driving, take it easy, relax & it'll be a breeze.
2. Modern cars which have been maintained properly hardly ever have a breakdown. Jap cars brought this reliability phenomenon to the world & are dead reliable if you service the regularly & do preventive maintenance. But in our conditions a puncture or a tyre failure can happen at times so I would suggest you learn how to change a flat tyre at least, it can come in handy since you can carry a portable air compressor & all that but in case of a sidewall failure or something like that you will need to change the tyre.
Apart from that you need basic skills like checking all the vital fluids, checking the fuses if needed & as a precaution always carry a tow rope just in case you need it. With the widespread reach of Mobile networks today help is always at hand unless you're going to a very remote area.
3. The situation is not as bad as is portrayed by a lot of people out there. Sure, it is dangerous but not as if you're going into a death trap every time. The correct thing to do is take it easy (no rush to reach the destination) and find a speed that you're comfortable about maintaining give the situation prevailing around you. And you don't have to be rigid, if the situation changes & the roads empty you can pick up the pace & if the traffic is more then you slow down, as simple as that.
For a first timer, you would be best of if you drive defensively and keep an eye out for the heavy vehicles around you. Use anticipation on what they're about to do rather then waiting for them to make their move & then reacting. When overtaking them give them a toot since these vehicle's have large blind spots & at times can't register that there is a car besides them.
And the most important thing is to enjoy the drive, take it easy & have fun out there!
|4th April 2008, 13:34||#67|
Join Date: Oct 2007
Thanked: 54 Times
While iraghava has covered it so well, I would also like to share my experiences of long drives. Longest I have travelled so far is approx 950 kms in 17 hours with few breaks for tea snacks food etc ( Mumbai to Jaipur) and approx. 1100 kms from Nagpur to Pune in approx. 19 hours. Both the trips I took in a sedan. Mumbai to goa - number of times in hatch as well ( approx.10 hours).
1. What I do for a trip: for business or pleasure - it may just be without much preparation except that I keep my car regularly serviced and well maintained and depending on where I am going and who is accompanying, I keep sufficient cash, a pair of sandals ( summers), a shawl in winters, a hand towel handy and few litres of water for emergency. Basic testing of cars water oil and fuel , air pressure including that of steppnae, spare headlight bulbs, tool kit, jack etc., some first aid medicine, depending on your requirement( I need disprins most) and also something for stomach upset ( OTC drugs) , torch- I have dynamo one so no need for battery just a spare bulb , jackknife, lighter and match box and a big stick ( I have never needed to use it though). For eats - some toffees, chocs, drinking water and aerated drinks, little hearts, some fruits, all the music I want to listen to , soap strips, tissues and lastly old newspapers( very useful for cleaning windshileds and headlights at night when insects stick on). This is a list that is needed for the car and me, rest for kids and family, depends and you know its usual. The nos. baggage and load increases but fun is multiplied . I am sure you would agree.
2. Next is knowing the FE of the car- you need to plan how much fuel is there and how far can you go till you need a refill. This is one reason for which sure, one has to stop. I have been fortunate enough not to have encountered any breakdown or punctured tyre so far on any long drive that I have taken but I guess one needs to be ready to meet such an eventuality. Must keep the nos. of roadside assistance available through dealers handy, carry your rc book, user manual ( it has nos.)insurance and driving licence - all originals as well including nos. of other manufacturers and Exide helpline. A car charger for mobile phone is must. I assumed that you have roaming activated on your cellphone.Keep a screwdriver and better still a tool kit in boot. I was trying to change the tyre of Verna and I was aghast when there was no screwdriver in it and there is no way that you can remove the hub cap on the wheels without it as even a coin was not able to do this. Luckily, I was just practicing so, learnt it.
3. The biggest problem you face is on the narrower highways/ roads(e.g. Delhi - Dehradun road till last year- I heard that bypass roads are ready around muzaffarnagar and meerut) where oncoming vehicles , while trying to overtake block the road in front. This problem is worse in nights and worst in nights in monsoons with potholes paving the road sides and slippery muddy patches that you may have to stick to save your car. If you are not very comfortable, best is to avoid driving at nights in monsoons. However, Goa trip is so much romantic in these conditions- so you have to decide.
4. Depending on your driving style, other passengers, you may take breaks as required. Most of the co-paasengers dont disturb you at nights but day time, kids specially need more frequent breaks for refreshment. 1- 2 hours of contiunous driving is ok and after that take a short break to rest your eyes. You can stretch that depending on your moods and the scenery around. Reliance pumps are very good at almost all the places I been recently.
5. In day use goggles and wash your eyes and face whenever you take a break. Its very soothing for eyes. Eat lightly and less oily stuff- they make you feel more sleepy. In case, you must carry on, sip a cup of tea/ coffee after moderate lunch / dinner and drive slowly for first half an hour and take longer break if you are feeling sleepy. In case, you smoke- go ahead.
6. Avoid cities as far as possible in day as well as night to save time unless you are visiting the city. Take bypass, keep reading road signs and boards for directions. If you feel, dizziness, tired, burning sensation in eyes, pain in the neck or back or knees, take a break- stretch yourself, moisten your eyes by frequently winking and keep your windows if not fully then partly, closed in dusty conditions and at night as lot of insects tend to hit the vehicle.
7. In crowded areas, narrow roads it helps to follow a bigger vehicle like a scorpio/ safari/truck in case, you cant overtake it. It saves a lot of efforts as you dont have to honk and it acts as your guide and also keep a safe distance as you cant see potholes in front , if any. The brakelights ahead warn you in advance so it helps.
8. keep some cash / change handy for tolls else you will be scrampling for your wallet while driving. Check tyre pressure whenever you take a break and also if it is getting overheated( beyond normal).
Hey it actually is not so complicated - I am sure most of us keep doing so. Changing gears is not much of a problem in long drives unlike city driving hence, auto tranny may not be such a big advantage or disadvantage but definitely it makes life easy but bit tougher on pocket as you know it and sometimes, you may wish to switch to lower gear to overtake that stupid lorry/ truck throwing black fumes at you.
Let me share that it is so addictive , once you get used to long trips in car. Its fun, convenient ( unless you love to sleep on a berth in ac coach). The sights that you get to see, the options that you get on the dhabas enroute etc. is all such fun and there is no distraction for days together - you are with your family in such closed space- you cant get closer.
And remember- fun is in the journey, enroute not at the destination- so enjoy while you are driving.
Last edited by shatrughna : 4th April 2008 at 13:35.
|4th April 2008, 13:55||#68|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Mar 2007
Thanked: 127 Times
Thanks a lot to both iraghava and shatrughana. I have planned for some time now to go on an outstation trip (last year I went to Shimla/Jalandhar but took a hired Innova, which cost me around Rs. 16K). I am going next week to Jalandhar by train, but I shall definitely go from Delhi to Chandigarh in June by car. That road is familiar and pretty good.
I am aware of the enjoyment, convenience, and comfort; and also some precautions. Only point is (perhaps I did not make it clear): tiredness and feeling of being wiped out after the trip. When you go out of town, you want to up and running the minute you hit your destination.
Last edited by vasudeva : 4th April 2008 at 13:58.
|17th August 2008, 17:56||#69|
Join Date: May 2008
This is great thread. I have been driving long distances (Bangalore-Mumbai is routine) and have done all India many times plus Bangalore-Leh 3 times in last three years. Probably around 4lakh Kms in 10 different cars that I have owned over last 12 years. Its been always self drive. My cars are always in top condition and ready to leave for 8000 kms trip any day. At present we have SX4 ZXi and Swift DZire ZDi.
Let me only write things that are different or noted as yet:
1. Portable Compressor: I am on tubeless tyres since about 8 years and never stranded. Does not mean that there was no puncture (in fact they were many) but you never get flat tire. You realise over 10-15 days that tyre is losing pressure. So you take it to tyre shop and puncture is respaired and tyre is back to leak-proof. And if you do have a flat tyre, then I have a portable compressor which can be plugged into cigarette lighter point and you could refill your flat tyre in less than 5 mins and continue with your journey. You do not dirty around changing the tyre. Remember tubeless tyres "leak" and do not go "flat" with a bang. I have never have to remove the stepney in last 8 years, though had to use my compressor a few times and thats cool. In fact I could help an Innova in the middle of himalayas (Manali-Leh road) when he had flat tyre and did not know how to get out of the situation. My compressor did the trick.
2. Sweet Lime Juice: For a day long journey (Bangalore-Pune), I would have 2 bottles (1 lit each) of sweet lime juice ready previous night and overnight cooled in fridge. It remains cool throught the day (I use 100% AC) and is great refreshner. I would have 2-3 sips pretty regularly untill both the bottles are finished in about 14 hours of drive. It does the trick for me and keeps my body energetic. Works for me.
3. Dry fruits\cup cakes\grapes: Thats what I like in my car on long journeys. They do not mess my hands and are easy to eat while driving.
4. Start slow: When you start, pick up the speed gradually. Not to hurry. I find that I settle down to proper driving only after about 15-20 mins of driving and thats when I reach my usual speed of 110kms\hr. I guess both car and driver need those first 15-20 mins to settle down.
5. Marathon v\s sprint: Thats the key thing when you are on long drive, i.e. you are on a marathon. You need patience and steady energy unlike the spririted sprints. You would find many a fellow cars who would seem like they are on "sprint". They would be on local drives and hence all show-off. Ignore them. Do not get into "race" with them. Let them do what they want and overtake... what have they.... remind yourself that you are on Marathon.... you have long way to go. If you start playing like those sprinters, you would end up in accident....no matter how good a driver you are, if not anything but for statistics sake. Thats difference between Marathon and Sprint!!!! A long drive.
6. Keep cool: Whenever I start for day long drive, I remind myself that today I am going to keep cool... more than ever before. No shouting at fellow cars\trucks no matter how stupid they may seem like. Heck.. I am not here to teach lesson to anybody but just enjoy my drive. Also rememeber, if you have an accident away from your hometown, you have a real trouble. I had them a few times and I can tell you it is 100 times better to be more cautious than end up in some accident with a local guy on the way. Everybody is looking for a fast buck and you become their ready maal.
7. Safety features (ABS & Airbags): I insist to have ABS and airbags on any car on highway. All those saying this\that car is solid and such stuff is all crap. ABS lets you manouver the car (no wheel locking) till the last moment which means you could avoid a collison. "This car has solid brakes" is no arguement for not having ABS. Airbags are must and more so in so called "solid" cars because those cars which crumple save passengers whereas those who are "solid" will invariably kill the passengers. Safety means you have to let one thing go... either you or the car.
8. Buckle up.. you must: I insist that all passengers (including rear) wear the seat belts. Seatbelt is your first line of safety and you must wear without any compromise. At highway speed, a small collision and you would know the value of seat belt. Also very important for rear passengers because I have seen accidents on highway wherein front passengers died on-spot and rear passengers are forced to live life which is worst than death. Essentially rear passenger get tossed up inside the car during collisson and usually suffer serious head and spinal injury which forces them to live life in their bedroom. Please follow these while on highway.
I think I deviated a bit from the title of thread... but be it, that I already wrote.
|The following BHPian Thanks Abhay.Neelwarne for this useful post:|
|5th October 2008, 00:50||#70|
Join Date: Sep 2008
Thanked: 20 Times
This is indeed a very informative article. Thanks a lot guys.
Someone said it is wiser to downshift to 4th gear while overtaking. What is the maximum safe speed at which you can do this? I suppose if you shifted down to 4th at 120, you should get a might jerk, shouldn't you?
Oh and for the gentleman below, there is only ONE Murphy's law.
|8th October 2008, 13:00||#71|
Join Date: Jun 2008
Thanked: 0 Times
All posts in this thread were of a great help to us, me and my husband, in preparing us for our first highway journey from Hyderabad to Bangalore and return. Although, we got few inputs from friends, but the details provided in this thread was awesome. In fact, we prepared our checklist using information from this thread.
Car: Tata Indica Xeta GLG, June 2008 model
Highway Mileage: 16 kmpl without AC and 14 kmpl with AC on speed 2
Distance covered - 1300 kms (including the city travel in bangalore during
Source-Destination - Hyderabad - bangalore - hyderabad
Start time at Hyd. - 06:15 hours
End time at Blr - 18:00 hours
Start time at Blr - 05:15 hours
End time at Hyd - 17:00 hours
Following were our preparations, observations and lessons we learnt:
a) Got the vehicle serviced.
b) Got the wheel alignment and wheel balancing done.
c) Air pressure checked in all wheels including stepney.
d) levels of coolant, wiper water, battery water, etc checked.
e) Tank full the previous night + System 3G fuel additive.
f) Carried Red bull energizer drinks/Real mosambi juice cartons, cupcakes, chips, water bottles.
g) Purchased road maps - Karnataka, AP from mymapsindia.
h) Also kept google maps printouts of the complete route.
OBSERVATION & LESSONS:
a) Road surface till Kurnool is good. After that, till we enter Karnataka, road
resembles moon surface with craters!
b) Helpful signboards on the side of the road
c) Milestones boards present on Hyderabad-Bangalore trip. Bangalore-
Hyderabad trip, milestones not clearly mentioned. Hence, we depended
on our memory a lot.
Thus, always remember landmarks at entry points to any city/village.
We were making note in a diary at the arrival of each city/village. But
since we were new to the route, we felt the need. Those who frequent
this route, obviously do no need it.
d) Reliance A1 Food Plaza and BP company outlet present at Gooty. Till
then no such outlet is there. One more BP company outlet is there
between Gooty and Hyderabad.
Never depend on these food outlets on festivals as they would either be
closed or no proper menu. We left on Mahaashtami day during Durga
Puja, thus, outlets were closed on the occasion.
e) We found that till 8:00 a.m., most of the dhabas were not opened. And
highway dhabas(most of them) serve only lunch and dinner meals. Finally
stopped at Jadcherla for breakfast.
f) While you carry food items for the journey, make a mix of sweet and
salty items. Do not just carry sweet items or just salty stuff. You will
need both to maintain carbohydrate and salts balance in the body.
Lime juice/mosambi juice intake is mandatory during the journey.
REMEMBER - Never overeat, infact, better avoid your normal course of
food till you reach your destination. Keep yourself light on stomach.
g) It being October, weather was pleasant in the morning in hyderabad till
10:30 a.m. Once we reached Kurnool, heat picked up. Although the A/C
was on still the sunlight was penetrating and affected us badly.
Tinted glasses would be really good. Since our car glasses are not
tinted, we used our turkish towels to insulate the car!
h) At Kurnool, we went to BP petrol pump for refuelling. (It was a
precautionary measure, more than the need.) Those guys thought that
we are in dire need and refused to fill normal petrol. They said that they
have only Speed.
We decided always to get fuel from company outlets rather than these
individual distributors. Finally we got the refuelling done at Gooty BP
i) Long distance truck drivers were the most well behaved and helpful.
They being at a height would help us in navigation as well as overtaking.
Worst kind - The rest of them which includes Volvo buses and local
vehicles following Brownian Movement!, localiites crossing the road with
or without herds of cows and sheep.
j) Afternoon time, beware of sleepy truck drivers. Suddenly you will find a
truck in zig-zag motion, more often than not, driver is driving with his
eyes closed. Stating out of personal experience as this just freaked us
k) As you are approaching Karnataka, milestone boards vanish. You would
never know which place/city/town you have entered. Since we had
already calculated approx. distance from Anantpur to Bagepalli(entry
point of Karnataka) and most importantly, I knew how to read Kannada,
we could make out when we entered Karnataka. After a long time, we
entered Chikkaballapur, which is approx. 50 kms from bangalore, again no
sign boards. On some shop, I read in kannada, the name written and we
were sure we entered the place.
The best part is, till we do not enter Devanahalli, there is no mention of
the road being NH-7 either, from Bagepalli. We were in such a dilemma till
we saw the board of devanahalli, despite all kinds of maps being with us.
I guess, once the highway work is done, boards will be installed!
l) From Devanahalli to Bangalore, we had the best driving experience.
6-Lane road was fantastic.
And lo! we reached bangalore. The worst starts now with narrow congested roads, with rains adding to our misery.
m) Somehow, we found that the last mile to be covered is the most difficult
as the destination keeps nearing your impatience increases!! I do not
know if others experience this or not but I felt it and it starts affecting
driving also. We had to keep a vigil on that aspect as well.
I have tried sharing my experience with least repetitions from other posts. No point in that, right!
Happy driving experience to all!
|12th January 2009, 13:46||#72|
Join Date: Jan 2009
Thanked: 0 Times
If I may add to this wonderful series..
There is nothing more thrilling for a driving enthusiast than a long distance drive, where the whole family acts as if everybody is on the wheels. This I observed while I took a long drive on NH 3/ NH 8 from Mumbai to Silvassa and back. It is not that you have to listen to all the (mis)directions that come from the backseat drivers, but it keeps you alert on the highways, especially when you are on the mood to doze off or agitated when a local sprinter honks his blaring horns or overtakes dangerously from nowhere (neither left nor right).
Dhabas are the best places to relax. But you do not have to discuss your travel plans. The rule in dhabhas is that you talk less and listen more. Dont want to have some local hoodlums or inebriated urchins on your trail, do you?
Have your family deity installed in the car and follow some rules in preserving the sanctity of the vehicles. Don't smoke and direct the puff on the Ganesh or Radha Krishna statue. You will understand that the vehicle has a life of its own, serving its responsibilty not to strand you in the thicket of a jungle and warn you of its tire going to flatten when you are through with your refreshment and a tyre repair shop is readily available nearby so that you can fix it before embarking on the next part of your journey.
As someone mentioned, the pleasure is not in the destination, but in the process of reaching the destination, in time, in healthy condition so as to enjoy what is in store for you on the 'shores' ahead.
Note from the Team-BHP Support Staff : Please do not post your complete message in BOLD. We'd appreciate your taking a quick pitstop by our board rules section.
Last edited by khan_sultan : 1st February 2009 at 08:29. Reason: Post in all BOLD. Edited.
|30th January 2009, 14:16||#73|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jan 2008
Thanked: 403 Times
Great tips here from the senior members! In order to make life better on the road, the following are always in my car:
1. A foot pump.
2. A puncture repair kit for tubeless tyres.
3. A bottle opener.
4. About 2 to 3 litres of drinking Water.
5. A dhurrie / jamkhana (for impromtou picnics).
6. Tissues and wipes.
For a long drive I ensure that the following are loaded:
1. Ice box with water, soda, fruit juices, buttermilk/lassi - both sweet and salted, aerated drinks.
2. Food - both the junk food and the healthy varieties.
3. Plastic/paper glasses and plates.
4. Towels and napkins.
5. Relevant maps.
6. Games, toys and reading material to keep the passengers occupied esp. kids.
7. A variety of music.
8. A small cushion/pillow (like the ones in airplanes).
9. Extra bag(s), change of clothes and bottles.
Incidentally, I have always obtained best results filling in the correct cold tyre air pressure as recommended by the manufacturer. Less pressure leads to increased rolling resistance, heating of tyres, heavy steerung and lower FE. Increased air pressure causes the car to 'float' meaning less grip and control.
In the older vehicles I used to add either marginal amounts (never more than 1 ml per litre) of additives or a light 2T oil to the fuel, the detergents work wonders on long drives with their constant engine tempratures and continuous flow of air, fuel etc..
Cheers and happy driving.
|30th January 2009, 15:25||#74|
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: New Delhi
Thanked: 9,725 Times
Sunlight bar soap mixed with a little bit of sugar and water produces a putty-like material which sets to an 'M-Seal'-like rock-hard material. Very handy to fix fuel and oil leaks from the petrol tanks (the old Padmini tank was prone to damage) or engine sumps - still applies to modern cars.
|1st February 2009, 00:32||#75|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jan 2008
Thanked: 403 Times
No turmeric for the high pressure coolant systems
The sunlight soap still holds good. M-seal still has not replaced it as M-seal does not stick to oily surfaces. The sunlight soap based concoction does.
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