Teen Driving Basics: What Your New Driver Should Know About Car Maintenance by Mark Conor

Teen Driving Basics: What Your New Driver Should Know About Car Maintenance by Mark Conor offers excellent advice for parents who are preparing a child to assume the responsibilities of driving a car. While Mark started this effort due to his son’s ADHD condition, this advice is good for parents of all children. Thanks Mark.


  • Getting a driver’s license is a right of passage for almost every teenager and many cannot wait to hit the road once they have passed the written and road tests. Parents have a lot to consider when it comes to letting their newly-licensed teens drive, and teaching them car maintenance basics should be near the top of the list.

Evaluate whether your teen with ADHD is truly ready to drive

Teach teens the basics of vehicle maintenance

Walk through changing tires and managing blowouts

  • Your Mechanic suggests that parents take the lessons regarding car maintence a step further. For example, teaching a teen to change a tire can come in quite handy. It is important to teach teens, especially those with ADHD, this process slowly and patiently, having them do the steps alongside you if possible.
  • It may be wise to teach teens how to handle emergency situations like having a tire blowout while driving. Many people, including plenty of adults, panic at a time like this and cause additional damage or even injuries. When a blowout happens, it’s important to stay calm, hold on firmly to the steering wheel, and let the vehicle slow without using the brakes and get to the side of the road.

Prepare your teen for issues while on the road

  • Jumping the battery is another car care basic that can come in handy for teenagers. InMotion includes this on their list of what teens should know about auto care and most adult drivers know that a dead battery is a common car-related issue. Jumping a battery isn’t difficult, but it’s a process that should be carefully explained to teens, especially those with ADHD who have challenges with focusing.
  • There is a lot for teenagers to learn about car safety, driving rules, and maintenance before they hit the road, and this can be overwhelming for teens with ADHD. Parents should take things slowly and it can be helpful to create written checklists or a checklist to put on a teen’s phone to make it easy to remember what needs to be done. It may seem like a lot of work upfront, but preparing your teen with maintenance basics and an overall appreciation for a vehicle will serve them well as they hit the road and face challenges in the driving days ahead.

Mark Conor

  • Mark created DriveSafely after his son, who has ADHD, started driving. He hopes the site will encourage teens and adults to make good decisions behind the wheel.
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