Many drivers are of the opinion that the handbrake should never be applied. There are many rumors as to why it is bad to put on the handbrake. In reality, however, the handbrake serves as an important “second safeguard” in addition to the engaged gear and is therefore not without reason in every car. If the gear is not properly engaged when leaving the vehicle, the vehicle can move on a slight incline quickly become self-employed. In summer and when the temperature is just below zero, the handbrake should always be applied as a double safeguard, especially on inclines. The rumor that the handbrake freezes in winter is only true in certain exceptional situations: The handbrake freezes especially when the humidity is high and the weather is wet and the road is muddy. If the handbrake does freeze slightly, gently accelerating usually helps to release it completely.
The handbrake should always be tightened next to the engaged gear! If you do not pull the handbrake and the gear is not properly engaged, the car can roll away and in the worst case on another parked vehicle. The insurance company can refuse to provide benefits here because you have negligently not applied the handbrake! A “freeze” is rather unlikely. For example, if you park your car in winter at about -20 degrees for a week or longer outdoors on a levels area, only the (safely) engaged gear is sufficient. EWheel chocks are also an alternative to the handbrake.
Tip: If you have driven your car through the car wash in the summer, parked it for a few days and pulled the handbrake, you will encounter slight resistance when starting off – even though you have released the handbrake – which can be overcome by gently accelerating. In this case, the handbrake is minimally rusted. However, this has no negative consequences for the vehicle!
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