Three Tips For Safely Driving A Cargo Van

Posted on: 9 March 2016


When you're planning a small move that doesn't require you to rent a truck, renting a cargo van, from a company like Elite Truck Rental, can be the perfect vehicle for getting the job done. With wide-opening doors and a large storage area, your cargo van can handle furniture items and boxes alike to help you move your possessions from one home to another. If you've never driven anything larger than a standard-sized car, it can be a bit of an adjustment getting behind the steering wheel or a cargo van. However, you shouldn't be intimidated by this larger vehicle. By keeping these three tips in mind, you'll be able to get to your destination safely.

Your Van Is Heavier When Loaded

When you drive the empty cargo van from the rental outlet the your home, you'll get a sense of how much pressure you need to apply to the brakes to stop in a safe amount of time. However, it's important to know that when the cargo fan is fully loaded with your possessions, this stopping distance will increase dramatically. As such, you'll need to be more vigilant about applying the brakes early -- and often before you think you need to. Avoid risking an accident by making sure that your following distance is safe and that you're careful to reduce your speed before entering corners.

You'll Need To Rely On Your Mirrors

The back windows of cargo vans are often opaque to help keep your items secure, but this means that the center mirror on the windshield won't be any use. You'll need to rely heavily upon your mirrors to be aware of what's around you while you drive, back up and park. It's ideal to sit in the driver's seat of the cargo van and have one of your moving assistants manually move the mirrors based on your suggestions. Cargo vans often have two mirrors per side -- one to view the traffic and another to show your blind spots along the sides of your vehicle, so make sure these are both positioned properly.

Keep An Eye Out For Overhead Obstacles

Cargo vans are significantly taller than your typical car, which means that you'll need to be careful to avoid overhead obstacles -- especially when you're backing up. It's a good idea to survey the area that you'll be backing into before you begin to do so. This means briefly getting out of the van and checking for things such as low-hanging branches or signs that you could bump into.