First, find a space that you can fit your vehicle into. Signal your intention to park to other drivers as you approach. If you are not sure, stop your vehicle beside the space and check that you have at least 2 m more than the length of your vehicle. Shift to reverse as soon as possible to activate the back-up lights.
This is only one suggested method of parallel parking. There are others that work just as well.
- Position your vehicle parallel to the front vehicle about .5 m out from it, with your back bumper lined up with the front vehicle's back bumper. Shift to reverse, check that the way is clear and get ready to steer.
- Back slowly. Immediately start turning your wheel toward the curb until you reach about a 45 degree angle. (Pay attention to your vehicle's front end swing into traffic. Make sure you are clear of oncoming vehicles.)
- Continue to back slowly and straighten your wheels.
- When your front bumper clears the bumper of the front vehicle, continue to move slowly and turn your wheels away from the curb.
- If necessary, shift to first or drive, and slowly move forward while you straighten your vehicle.
Driving assist options are becoming increasingly more standard on new vehicles. However, they aren't substitutes for proper driving techniques. In the case of back-up cameras, the sun can interfere with the view as can snow, or dirt. Before reversing, look over your shoulder and use your mirrors to check behind you. Shift into reverse to activate the back-up camera. As you back up, check the monitor for objects while being aware of your surroundings. Observe your mirrors and check or look through the rear window. Don't rely primarily on the monitor when backing.
Where a parking space is at 90 degrees (a right angle) to the road, as it is in most parking lots, it is recommended that you back into the space, unless it is prohibited. You have the advantage of being able to back in accurately because your windows are clear and you are warmed up for driving. In addition, the front end swing occurs in the aisle, not between two parked cars and you are backing into a space you know is free of obstacles instead of backing into traffic. More importantly, when you drive out you will have an excellent view.
Some parking spaces are at about a 60 degree angle to the road. These spaces are usually located in small urban centres and on one-way streets. You are meant to drive into and back out of them.
Steps in angle parking:
- Signal your intention to park and slow down.
- Check for approaching traffic from the front and rear.
- Approach the stall approximately one vehicle width from the parked vehicles.
- When your vehicle's front end is even with the rear of the stall you want to park in, begin steering sharply to the right while slowly driving towards the centre of the stall. Remember, as you are turning into the stall, to check that you will not hit the vehicle on either side of the stall.
- Once your vehicle is centred in the stall, straighten your wheels and continue driving forward until you are completely in the parking stall. Although it is easy to park, backing out from this position can be hazardous. Shoulder check both your sides and rear - don't just rely on your rearview mirror. Make sure it is clear behind and on both sides before backing up. If your vision is blocked, for example, by a truck parked beside you, move back cautiously and watch for pedestrians or vehicles that you may not have seen.
Parking on a hill
The trick to parking on a hill is to turn your front wheels so that if the vehicle rolls away, it will roll into the curb and stop. If there is no curb, the vehicle should roll off the road, not into the path of other vehicles. This will prevent the vehicle from building momentum and will stop it from entering the street. The emergency brake should be applied whenever parking on a slope.
Downhill with curb
Uphill with curb
Downhill no curb
Uphill no curb