It's always difficult to track down the origins of an urban myth, let alone a motoring one. Luckily there's something called science, or common sense, which soon settles the issue. So MotorEasy has applied these principles to a bunch of the more popular myths to see if they actually stand up to closer scrutiny. I mean, was the Nissan Bluebird really going to be called Gluebird?*
Motoring Myth 1: Red Cars Cost More To Insure
Insurance companies can have all sorts of bizarre reasons for raising the premiums on your car, but colour isn’t usually one of them. However, you could think it is.
The reason that red is associated with higher premiums is that it was once a popular colour for sports cars. Ferraris are mostly red, quick and cost a lot to insure.
However, your red Vauxhall Corsa should cost the same as a blue one. It depends on the car, oh and where you live and what you do.
Motoring Myth 2: Can I Clean My Car With Washing Up Liquid
This one is no myth it is bang on the money. Whatever you do, don’t be tempted to skimp on the cost of proper car shampoo.
The trouble with washing up liquid is that it isn’t designed to clean car bodywork. No, it is formulated to deal with dirty dishes and therefore has abrasives in it, damaging your bodywork.
Motoring Myth 3: Warm Your Car Up Before Driving
Back in the old days, it made some sense to make sure that your car was running well enough to embark on a potentially hazardous journey.
With modern cars you are simply wasting fuel. They are designed to be started and get going with no time for warming up, it doesn’t need it.
That’s why the start/stop technology is so successful and prevalent in modern vehicles.
Motoring Myth 4: Filling Up First Thing Is Cheaper
Probably the best reason for filling up first thing in the morning is to beat the rush, not just for fuel, but also for coffee and other things to eat first thing in the morning.
This is all to do with living in a hot country. As the day wears on it gets warmer and things expand, including fuel vapour, which would be much more dense first thing. So you might just get a fraction more fuel in the tank when the temperature is cool.
In the UK, well we do get the odd heat wave, but mostly humid conditions are a bonus. The advantages are fractional. Fill up when you feel like it.
Motoring Myth 5: Hanging things from the rear view mirror is illegal
It all depends on what you want to dangle from the mirror. Mostly it won’t be a problem, however it will if it reduces your forward vision.
The decision will be made by a police officer, so always make sure that there is nothing straight ahead, including Sat Navs, air fresheners and furry dice.
Motoring Myth 6: Speeding, the police have a large leeway to prosecute
The police officer guidelines say it's as much as 10% plus 2mph to allow for speedometer error. However that's just a guideline. You can be 1mph over the limit and be prosecuted it's as simple as that. Don’t speed.
Motoring Myth 7: You can’t eat, drink and drive
Actually you can, provided that it doesn't distract you from the important business of driving.
There have been prosecutions when a driver has been stationary at traffic lights, biting into an apple and taking a swig from a water bottle.
It's also a question of intent and the judgement of a police officer. Maybe you need a good solicitor. However, what's never in doubt is under no circumstances use your hand held mobile phone or drink alcohol and drive.
There are of course hundreds of motoring myths, if you want some challenged or busted, then get in touch with MotorEasy *That Nissan Bluebird has been renamed Gluebird, as it applies a special type of adhesive to the Santa Pod Raceway…