How to Drive Uphill With a Manual Transmission

by Contributor

Driving a car with a manual transmission takes practice. One skill you will need to learn is how to take off from a stop when driving up steep streets. Here's a few things to remember when driving uphill that will prevent you from rolling back in to the car behind you or rolling back down the hill.

Step 1

Stop at a stop light or sign while going uphill.

Step 2

Locate your emergency brake and engage it. On most cars with a manual transmission, it's located to the right of the driver's seat in the center console area, or between the front two seats. If you have an older model vehicle, it may be a pull lever located under the dash. It can also be a foot-operated brake located to the left of all the other pedals in the driver's side foot well. Check your owner's manual if you need help locating it.

Step 3

Step on the clutch with your left foot, put the car in first gear and use your right foot for the gas when it is time to start again. You don't need a foot on the brake since the emergency brake will hold your car in place.

Step 4

Press down lightly on the gas while you start to raise the clutch.

Step 5

Release the emergency brake as soon as you feel the car start to grab and move forward.

Step 6

Continue to accelerate and completely release the clutch.

Practice driving uphill from a red light or stop sign. Once you're more experienced, you will be able to quickly shift your foot from brake to gas when taking off and won't have to use the emergency brake.


  • Try to find someplace without any traffic to practice taking off while going uphill.
  • Make sure to leave plenty of room between you and the car in front of you when driving uphill. You don't want them to roll back in to your car if you are too close.


  • Use lower gears when driving uphill to keep the car from stalling.
  • Don't use the clutch to hold your car in place on inclines. It will wear out the clutch.

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