Moving off uphill and downhill tutorial

Hill starts - uphill

Moving off uphill is similar to moving off on a level road. A good knowledge of clutch control is required to move off uphill as the car will have a tendency to roll back if the clutch is used incorrectly. To avoid rolling the car backwards, the correct use of the clutch, gas pedal and handbrake is needed.

First prepare the car for moving off. Ensure the handbrake is on, depress the clutch and select 1st gear. Set the gas at around 1500 revs on the rev counter and bring the clutch up to the biting point. You have reached the bite point when the bonnet slightly lifts and the revs drop off slightly. If the car grumbles or strains too much then depress the clutch slightly. Around the width of a pound coin should do it. Depressing the clutch all the way will completely lose the bite point. For more information on setting the gas and the bite point, see moving off safely.

Once you have set the gas and the bite point, hold your feet steady. Place your left hand on the handbrake and make your normal safety checks not forgetting the blind spot. Signal if necessary and if safe to go, then raise the handbrake, press the button and release the handbrake very slowly.

If the car starts to roll back then reapply the handbrake, press the foot brake and the clutch. Start the exercise once again until you have full control and are confident that the car will not roll backwards.

As you gradually release the handbrake, the car should either remain still or slowly move forward. In either case, continue to release the handbrake, gently apply more gas at the same time as slowly releasing the clutch. If possible try and practice of a variation of hill gradients. If moving off on a steep incline, more gas will be needed than usual and/or slower use of the clutch when releasing.

Hill starts - downhill

Select the appropriate gear. If it is a slight slope, 1st gear should be sufficient, a steep slope then select 2nd gear. Firmly apply the foot brake and release the handbrake keeping the foot brake on.

Complete the usual all round safety checks and signal if necessary.

Release the foot brake and bring the clutch up as the car starts to roll forward. Gently increase the gas.

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