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Safe Driving Practices for New Parents

Welcoming a new child into the world also welcomes huge changes. Not only does becoming a new parent drastically alter your day-to-day routine, it also adds a whole laundry list of additional concerns and responsibilities that you now have to manage on top of your already busy life.

Road safety might not be one of the first things we think of when we imagine what it’s like to bring a newborn home from the hospital, but it’s a big part of everyday life as a new parent. From staying on top of maintenance to driving cautiously, Next Drive Auto Dealership has plenty of great tips to keep in mind as you motor about town with your new baby in tow.

Look into Full-Coverage Insurance

Many of us save a good bit of cash each month by making sure to stick with a car insurance plan that has minimum coverage. For instance, the budget-minded often go with liability coverage, opting out of full coverage that costs a bit more.

However, now that you’re a parent, you should consider full coverage. It’s more on the pricey side, but peace of mind is a big selling point for those starting a new family. Shop around to find the right blend of coverage and cost. You may even qualify for a few discounts, so be sure to ask the insurance agent to see what’s available.

Be Vigilant About Routine Maintenance and Upkeep

Many of us take care of our vehicles when we feel like it or when we have the time to get around to doing so. But let’s face it: taking the car in for a tune-up isn’t always the most convenient task. When you have a new baby, though, it becomes much more important. Not only does routine upkeep help you prevent sudden catastrophes and make sure everything is up to snuff inside your vehicle, but it keeps your car looking nice as well.

Basic routine auto maintenance includes checking the tyre pressure, air filter, and oil and coolant levels. Certain tasks like replacing the windshield wipers and checking the battery’s performance should be done as the seasons change.

Another tip for keeping your auto in good running condition is parking in a garage, which protects your car from the elements and outdoor-related hazards. If you don’t have a garage, consider building one, a smart investment not just for protecting your car but for increasing your home’s value. The addition of a garage is among the most alluring amenities for potential buyers.

Buckle Up

Never has it been so important to buckle up, both for yourself and for your new passenger. HealthDay notes that, when used properly, seat belts reduce the number of serious traffic injuries by 50 percent, according to a James Madison University study. What’s more, a University of Washington report found that when used together, automatic shoulder harnesses and lap belts reduce your risk of death in a car crash by 86 percent.

Using the proper age- and size-appropriate car seat is as critical as using seat belts. Do your research and learn what car seat is needed, and then how to correctly install it. When selecting a car seat, NHS recommends first reading the label, which is required on all car seats. This information is helpful when deciding which car seat your child will fit in based on stage (i.e., rear-facing and forward-facing), weight and height.

Drive Defensively

Defensive driving is usually the best bet when you have a new baby in the car. It’s also a great way to keep from having to pay for costly maintenance, as driving more steadily will help your breaks, tires and transmission last longer. Aggressive driving also puts you, your passengers, and other drivers on the road at an increased risk for accidents and potential injury, so BetterUp reminds that it’s important to take a deep breath, recognize your stress triggers, and drive with a little more care.

Become a More Intentional Driver

Driving around town can be particularly nerve-wracking with a little one in the backseat, but by keeping these tips in mind, it doesn’t have to be. The right driving strategies, especially when they’re coupled with a highly responsible maintenance schedule and a good auto insurance policy, can give you greater peace of mind when driving with your newborn.

Are you looking for a new car to keep your little one safe? Then visit Next Drive Auto Dealership to find your next new vehicle!

Photo Credit: Felipe Salgado via Unsplash