How to Parallel Park

Posted on by Defensive Driving | in Defensive Driving Tips

Whether you’re a brand new driver or not, parallel parking can often be extremely difficult. Learning how to parallel park takes a lot of practice and, while a driving safety course may help, it simply won’t substitute for real experience. If you understand the basic steps, you can practice correctly and be prepared when knowing how to correctly parallel park becomes a necessity. Follow the steps below and you can confidently learn how to parallel park:


Start with two feet of space between the side of your car and the car behind which you plan to parallel park. Your back bumper should be parallel with that car’s back bumper. Keeping your foot on the brake, turn your steering wheel toward the car behind which you plan to parallel park until the steering wheel can’t turn anymore.

parallel parking 1


Slowly let off the brake to back up with the wheel still completely turned. Stop when you can see the license plate of the back car in your side mirror. Your car should be at about a 45 degree angle at this point.

parallel parking 2


Straighten your wheels completely and then continue backing up.

parallel parking 3


When your front bumper and the front car’s back bumper are about parallel, you can stop backing up. Stop backing up once the front of your car is past the bumper of the first car.

parallel parking 4


With your foot on the brake turn your steering wheel all the way in the opposite direction of the car in front of you.

parallel parking 5


Back in the rest of the way while keeping the wheel turned. Slowly straighten out within the spot.

parallel parking 6


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