Top Ten Suggestions to Get Ready for a Teen Driver ~ Create it. Go!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Top Ten Suggestions to Get Ready for a Teen Driver


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All opinions are mine alone. 

#FueltheLove #CollectiveBias #teendriver #parenting #driverspermit #driverslicense 

Earlier this year, I posted about things that my dad taught me that I still use today...like how to change the oil in my car. Well, I have been thinking about things like that even more lately with my oldest son about to turn 16. He recently got his drivers learning permit, and my husband and I have been trying to prepare for our son (who seems like he was just learning how to walk!) being on the road as a driver. I'm not sure if it is harder to prepare for this mentally and emotionally, or physically. Haha

So, I've come up with a list of my Top Ten Suggestions to Get Ready for a Teen Driver. Eek! That idea still scares me! But here goes (for me and for him, AND for my suggestions. haha)


Top Ten Suggestions to Get Ready for a Teen Driver

1. This is an obvious one...learn about what it takes to get a learners permit, and help your teen prepare to do so. Each state is different. We printed off the "book" to study from (for our state), and my son studied it for a couple weeks before he went in and to take his written test. He aced it on the first time! I was thankful that he had studied and not wasted his and my time. PLUS, he'll need to know all of the information anyway on the road! So, even if you teen thinks he needs knows all the basics, studying will help them on the road.


 2. Call your insurance company and let them know that you will be adding your teen to your policy soon. They can let you know of anything else they will require, or of any discounts you might be able to receive. For example, many insurance companies give larger discounts if the teen takes a drivers education course verses being parent taught. Evaluate the cost of them taking the course compared to the discount you will receive. Your insurance company can give you an estimate of how much your policy will change with your teen as an added driver as well. They can also give you some tips as to what kind of cars/trucks will be more expensive to insure them on.


3. Make sure that your vehicle's registration, inspection (if required by your state), and insurance are all current. Then make sure there is proof of all three of those in the vehicle your child will be driving. AND make sure your child knows where to find them in the car. (If your state does not require inspections, then by law it is your responsibility to make sure that everything is in working order on your vehicle, so it's always a good idea to have it checked by a mechanic. This is important especially if you are planning on buying a used vehicle for your teen to drive.)


4. Teach your teen to check the oil on a regular basis in the vehicle they will be driving. Teach them to also have the oil changed and WHY it is important to do so. I doubt most teenage drivers are aware of what happens to a car if it runs out of oil. OR I doubt they know how much longer a vehicle can go with regular, good oil changes. For example, Pennzoil oil will allow you to drive an extra of 550 miles per year verses a dirty engine.

We always take our vehicles into Walmart to have the oil changed. It's convenient for me, because I can utilize the time spent, while they are changing the oil, by getting some of my shopping done for the family. We use the high mileage Pennzoil oil and I can trust that it helps to keep our vehicles running well. It helps to clean out sludge lesser oils leave behind. This is even more important to me, as a parent, as I get ready to hand the keys over to my teenage son. Pennzoil oil for the high mileage vehicle is known in helping to reduce leaks and oil consumption in worn or higher mileage engines. It's a motor oil that is specifically designed for new or late model vehicles with over 75,000 miles, to help keep the engines running clean and going strong for a long time.


PLUS, I save! Right now there is even a rollback at Walmart:

From June 10th - September 9th, Pennzoil oil changes will be on Rollback at Walmart ACC {Automotive Care Center} stores.
High Mileage $35.88, compared to the regular Walmart price of $39.88. 
Industry standard price is $46}
Platinum Full Synthetic $45.88, compared to the regular Walmart price of $49.88. 
{Industry standard price $66}

And one more reason I go with Pennzoil:
Pennzoil also offers a free warranty that covers 15 engine parts that may fail due to engine wear or which experience abnormal wear due to friction. 
(For more information, check out the Pennzoil Warranty Site.) 

*It's even a good idea to have your teen go with you when you have the oil changed, so that they can take the vehicle in to have the oil changed by themselves the next time it needs it.


5. Teach your teen to check the air in the tires AND to know how much air there should be in each tire. Take them to an air pump and have them measure the air in each tire, and then add more if needed, so that they are comfortable doing so by themselves if ever needed. Make sure the tires are in good and safe driving condition as well.

6. Teach your soon-to-be-teen-driver how to change a flat. Have them watch you, AND THEN have them change a tire by themselves. Just watching you won't make them confident in their ability to change a tire. Doing it by themselves will! Also make sure that the vehicle that they will be driving has a good spare tire. (Show them where it is stored on the car and how to access it too. Important!)


7. Equip the vehicle that your teen driver will be using with some emergency basics. I like to have a first aid kit in our vehicles, some extra cash for emergencies, and emergency phone numbers as well. These all seem like little, unimportant, rarely needed things, but when they are needed, they can be lifesavers!

8. If you live where your teen might be driving in some severe weather (whether it's snow, ice, just plain cold, or other weather conditions), you may want to consider putting a 72 hour emergency kit in the trunk. It can be kept really basic, but again, if the need ever arises, it will be a huge thing to have it on hand.
(And it makes a mother feel better about them driving out there...well, a little bit better. haha)


9. Teach your teen NOT to text and drive. (That includes no social media as well.) Teach them that whatever it is, it can truly wait. Nothing is more important than their life...and others lives. Teach them to pull over to the side of the road when it is safe, if they have to check their phone for texts.

All 9 of the above steps are your basic physical things you can do to get your soon to be teenage driver ready for the road. I have to admit that they do help me, as a parent, feel more comfortable too, but I'm not sure that there is anything that can make me feel totally mentally and emotionally prepared to have my son out there driving for the first time. So, my last suggestion is this:


10. Love your child. Spend time with him/her. Have a good relationship with them, so that they can trust you if the need arises to call you, AND so that you can trust them as they head out there on the road. Be their friend, but be the parent first. It's up to you to teach them and to ultimately decide when and if they are ready to hit the road. Communicate with them about the dangers of driving and how many lives can be affected each time they get behind the wheel. Don't scare them to death, but make them aware. Teach them defensive driving. Help them to be prepared. Don't let them drive alone until they have driven with you enough times that you feel that they are ready to go solo. My parents always made us drive with them 3 months AFTER we had received our drivers license. Not a bad idea. Just one more little life lesson from my parents that I can still use today. 



At some point, we have to let them go. BUT, up until that point, we can help them along the way, in more ways than one. You gotta love being a parent! (Most the time at least. haha)

I've shared with you my thoughts and suggestions on getting ready to be the parent of a teen driver today. I'd love to hear some of your added suggestions as well or things that you did with your kids.

1 comments:

David Dial said...

This is such a great post! Thank you for the meaningful tips...and your photos are perfect for this topic. Thanks for sharing!! #client