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8 Best Ways to Get Out of a Traffic Ticket In 2021

Best Ways To Get Out Of A Traffic Ticket 2021

From VASCAR calculators to hidden cameras, radars, lasers, aircraft, and known-location speed cameras, police departments have every angle covered when it comes to catching traffic violators.

In some states, they have even more — they have slanted laws that favor the evidence from the devices. In the state of Vermont, for instance, the law assumes that police officers have inbuilt radars — they are allowed to guess at the speed of a vehicle and have their guess stand in court.

Since you can’t catch every speed sign as you drive, it can make sense to constantly keep an eye on the way the traffic around you behaves. If drivers around you seem to be slowing down, you should too, even when you haven’t seen a sign asking you to slow down.

It also pays to keep a low profile. For instance, if you have a sports car, you should know that the police expect you to speed and watch you closely when they can. You have less room for mistakes than someone who drives a minivan. You’ll need to be extra careful.

Here are a few more specific tips on what you can do to avoid speeding tickets.

1. Following proper etiquette when getting pulled over will help you get out of a traffic ticket

Getting out of a traffic ticket starts the moment the officer turns on his (often blinding) flashing lights. Most officers decide very quickly if they will be issuing you a ticket or not, so doing the right things early on will greatly increase your chances of receiving a warning.

When the officer initiates a traffic stop, do the following…

Indicate your intent to pull over – Don’t panic. You don’t need to slam on your brakes and pull over right away. Indicate your intent to pull over by slowing down and using your turn signal or hazard lights. Turn off your radio or any in-car audio so you can hear any instructions given over the PA system. Pull over as quickly as you can safely do so.

Pull over properly – It’s amazing where people will stop when an officer initiates a traffic stop. Many people panic and pull into unsafe areas. Do not pull into medians and get out of active traffic lanes if possible. If you’re on a multi-lane highway, always pull to the right unless an officer directs you otherwise (usually through the loudspeaker). Turn on your right turn signal and make safe lane change until you can get onto the RIGHT shoulder. Pulling into a median or on the left shoulder of the roadway is a pet peeve of most cops.

Create a comfortable environment for the officer – Police officers are usually on edge when first approaching your vehicle. Turn on interior lights at night, roll your window down, and keep your hands visible such as on the steering wheel. You should not be reaching into your glove box looking for your registration or reaching into your pockets to fish out your driver’s license. Keep your hands visible and wait for the officer to ask.

Following the above steps will greatly increase your chances of getting let off with a warning, simply for making the officer feel comfortable. However, there is one more important aspect to consider.

Decide if you want to incriminate yourself or not – At this point, you need to decide if you are going to admit guilt or not. If you do admit guilt, you will almost certainly lose in court. However, sometimes accepting responsibility will get the mercy of an officer, and he’ll let you go with just a warning for that reason alone. Otherwise, be courteous and friendly without admitting any guilt at all. You may get a ticket, but you’ll have a much easier time winning in court.

2. Being cooperative and courteous with the officer increases the chances of receiving a warning

Many of us are aggravated when we get pulled over, especially if you did nothing wrong. Understandable. But keep your cool.

It’s a good idea to be friendly and polite to an officer who pulls you over. Friendliness, though, doesn’t need to involve being chatty. The more you talk, the greater the risk that you will accidentally incriminate yourself in some way. It’s important to say as little as possible. When pulled over, you are only required to follow instructions — not answer questions.

If the officer asks you for any information, you can ask to speak to your lawyer. It’s important to remember to be polite through the process. The more antagonistic you are, the more violations the police are likely to write you up for.

Just remember, you will never win an argument with a cop on the side of the road. If an officer is intent on giving you a ticket, say as little as possible and fight it in court.

In many cases, simply taking a traffic school is the easiest way to go. It keeps the ticket off your record and you can get it done relatively quickly.

3. Get out of a traffic ticket by taking an online traffic school or defensive driving course

Many times, even if you’re as guilty as they come, you can get out of a traffic ticket by taking traffic school or defensive driving. Most states now allow you to take your traffic school or defensive driving course online.

When you take this route, you will usually have to pay for the ticket and spend a little more money (and time) by going through a state certified traffic school, but the traffic ticket then immediately comes off your driving record as if it never happened.

Listed below are some of the most popular online traffic schools and defensive driving courses for ticket dismissal.

4. Get out of a traffic ticket by challenging the methods used to calculate your speed

Equipment that’s used to measure a vehicle’s speed usually needs regular calibration if it is to not show incorrect readings. Police departments, though, are often too busy to make time for equipment calibration.

If you’ve been caught, chances are that the measuring device is a poorly calibrated unit. In this instance, you can challenge the police department in court for using poorly maintained equipment. The Freedom of Information Act gives you the right to ask for calibration information.

Just make sure you use that freedom of information act to your advantage. Judges are used to people challenging the calibration of radar guns and have grown very tired of people trying to get off on a simple technicality. If you’re going to use this defensive, bring proof the equipment was not properly calibrated. The video below shows how this defense has actually worked.

5. Common defenses for photo enforcement tickets

If your traffic ticket is a photo enforcement ticket (a speeding ticket based on evidence from an automatic camera), the law in many states requires that the forensics expert who analyzed the photo to determine your speed needs be present in court. This is because the law allows you the right to “face in your accuser.” Often, though, police departments are too understaffed to be able to spare their forensic experts. If you show up, then, you win by default.

To get around this, many cities will not issue you a state traffic citation. Instead, they will issue you a city ordinance violation. There is normally a process to contest the violation, but this is not a court of law.

In some states, you don’t have to pay these violations at all. Cities have no recourse against you if you choose not to pay the official looking violation notices.

Unfortunately, in most states, citizens are left with few rights and ways to pay the fine. Failure to pay the ordinance violation can result in your credit report taking a hit. If they do not reverse the violation, the only other way to really fight them is through civil court by filing a lawsuit against the city.

Obviously, filing a lawsuit against a city is expensive and time consuming. It’s a sad reality that many city governments know hardly anyone will fight them over a city ordinance violation, and you’re pretty much out of viable options.

6. Get out of a traffic ticket by checking signs where the violation occurred

Every driver should look up the manual on uniform traffic control devices. This document details the exact approved design for every kind of traffic sign — typeface, size, color, and so on.

A significant proportion of the signs you see on the streets are not up to spec. You should check the speed sign that you are supposed to have violated to see if it’s actually up to code. If it isn’t, mentioning it in court may get you out of the charge.

7. Get out of a ticket based on technicalities

In any legal case, you can have your credibility and integrity questioned if you mis-remember one detail from one court hearing or police hearing to the next. You can use this devotion to technical accuracy in your favor.

Unless it is illegal in your state to record conversations with the police (it is illegal in Maryland, for instance), you should be alert enough to switch on your cellphone’s recording mode as soon as you are pulled over. Then, you should compare the language used in the court filing with what you hear in your recording. If there is a contradiction, you will easily win.

Another example of a technical violation would be inadequate pacing. Usually, the law requires that an officer follow you for between a third of a mile and half a mile before stopping you. You need to ask the officer if he actually did it. Officers often neglect to follow protocol.

If you’re going to try to get out of a traffic ticket by using a technicality as your defense, you better go in prepared. Judges have very little patience for this kind of defense, so you better be right, and you better have proof.

I know, I know. This is America. Innocent until proven guilty right?


Trust me, bring proof.

Also, make sure the technicality will actually get your desired result. For example, people often think a clerical error will get them out of a traffic ticket. Say, for example, the officer miswrote the date or time in the traffic ticket. Does that mean you get to go free? Absolutely not.

If you think you have a technicality as a defense, that’s fine. But research it and be prepared for a judge to scrutenize it.

8. Use your dash cam footage to get out of a traffic ticket

Don’t have a dash cam? What are you waiting for!? Having a dash cam is one of the best ways to get out of a speeding ticket. This, assumes of course, that you didn’t actually do what you were accused of doing.

Many modern dash cams have GPS units built into them that can display your speed and location. The speed that the GPS unit shows may not be legally accepted in court, but you can also calculate how fast you were going based on passing objects or based on the lines on the road.

Most dash cams also pick up sound, so you can record the conversation you have with the officer. If the officer makes any discrepancies, make sure to point that out in court.

Dash cams save people all the time in court, especially for accidents they were accused of being at fault for, even though they weren’t. If you have a dash cam and you were at fault, you don’t have to show the footage. But anytime you’re not at fault, a dashcam will be your best witness.

Sometimes accepting guilt is better than fighting it

If you have a clean driving record or haven’t received a traffic ticket in years, sometimes just accepting guilt is the easiest and most pain-free way. You might need to take a defensive driving course and pay a fine, but it beats taking a day (or multiple days) off of work and sitting in court all day.

However, listed above are some of the easiest defenses for getting out of a traffic ticket. If you’re truly not guilty, fight for yourself and let the truth prevail!

Full List Of All Online Texas Defensive Driving Courses For 2021

List Of Online Texas Defensive Driving Courses 2021

Need to sign up for an online Texas defensive driving course? Below is a full list of state-approved Texas defensive driving courses.

With so many online defensive driving courses in Texas, before I get to the full list, here are the top 4 defensive driving courses I recommend in Texas.

The 4 Best Online Defensive Driving Courses In Texas

Full List Of All State-Approved Online Defensive Driving Courses In Texas For 2021

Reviews & Comparisons Of the Most Popular Online Defensive Driving Courses In Texas

Listed above we gave you the 4 best online defensive driving courses in Texas for 2021. Those also happen to be among the most popular. While I don’t have the time to review all online traffic schools, I can certainly give you more detailed reviews of the top 4.

1. iDriveSafely

iDriveSafely Online Defensive Driving Texas

iDriveSafely is one of the oldest online defensive driving courses in Texas. With over 20 years of experience and millions of driver’s who have dismissed traffic tickets, you can be pretty certain this is a vetted and legit schools to sign up for.

While some of the sections of iDriveSafely are getting outdated, this is still one of the best options as it is about the fastest course you can take. The course is still timed as all online defensive driving courses in Texas require, but the quizzes are so incredibly simple.

iDriveSafely also offers some perks such as audio read-along and they will process your completion certificate quickly – usually in 24hrs. This online defensive driving course has thousands of reviews and they are overwhelmingly positive, which is a pretty big feat considering most people don’t want to take defensive driving in the first place.

Oh, and they are one of the cheapest online defensive driving courses you’ll find in Texas. What’s not to like?

Get The Best Price On iDriveSafely Here

2. Go To Traffic School

Go To Traffic School

Go To Traffic School is another online defensive driving course in Texas that has been around seemingly forever. In fact, this online defensive driving school started before online defensive driving was even a thing!

Back in the 90’s, they provided booklet courses that could be done through the mail. This allowed people to complete their Texas defensive driving requirements from home.

Of course, once the internet gained popularity in the late 90’s and the Texas DPS approved defensive driving to be taken online, Go To Traffic School jumped on the opportunity and become one of the very first online defensive driving courses ever approved.

Even thought this is one of the oldest online defensive driving courses, they’ve done a great job keeping it updated and modern.

Oh, and I almost forgot the best part! Go To Traffic School guarantees to be the lowest priced online defensive driving course in Texas. If you find one for cheaper, they will match or beat the price.

Get The Best Price On Go To Traffic School Here

3. Improv Traffic School

Improv Texas Defensive Driving Online

Improv Traffic School just might be my personal favorite. As I’ve already explained, taking an online defensive driving course in Texas is boring as Hell. Nobody signs up by choice. Either you need to get a discount on your auto insurance, or you’re trying to dismiss a ticket. There’s really no other reason to take one.

Improv Traffic School knows this, and they also know how boring taking defensive driving is. That’s why a group of comedians began teaching defensive driving courses in classrooms back in the 90’s.

Of course, as soon as Texas approved defensive driving online, Improv Traffic School created an online version of their comedy based defensive driving classes.

In this school, you’ll be greeted with funny videos, games, and other features throughout the course that will help to entertain you as you go through this necessary evil.

To top it off, this online defensive driving course is fast, easy, and cheap. So if you want a few laughs as you go through your defensive driving course instead of falling asleep, consider Improv Traffic School.

Get The Best Price On Improv Traffic School Here

4. Aceable

Aceable Texas Online Defensive Driving

Aceable is the most modern online defensive driving course on this list. In fact, it’s the only online defensive driving course on this list that was developed this decade.

That’s a good thing, though. For starters, they’ve already had a ton of people go through their defensive driving course, and the response has been overwhelmingly positive. That’s because there’s really no defensive driving course in Texas that compares to it.

If you plan on taking your defensive driving course from a mobile device, I’d highly recommend this one. They have a dedicated app you can use and this defensive driving course also has much more in the way of videos and animations. If boring text puts you to sleep, again, this is probably the online defensive driving course for you.

Even though it’s modern, the price is the same as the others listed here. So, you get the most modern course at a low price.

Get The Best Price On Aceable Here

Requirements To Take Defensive Driving Online In Texas For Ticket Dismissal

The requirements to take an online Texas defensive driving course are pretty straightforward. There are different reasons one might take an online defensive driving course such as obtaining an insurance discount, but these requirements are for those who want to take defensive driving in order to remove a traffic citation from their Texas driving record.

In order to take a defensive driving course online, you must meet the following requriements:

  • Only those who possess a valid driver’s license or permit are eligible for defensive driving.
  • You may not hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL) unless you have been specifically approved by the court in which the ticket was issued.
  • If you received a speeding violation, you may not take an online defensive driving course in Texas if your speed was more than 25 mph over the posted limit.
  • The maximum amount of times you can take a defensive driving course in Texas is once every 12 months.
  • You must admit guilt to your traffic violation.

And that’s it! Pretty simple, right? It’s highly recommended that you check with your specific court to ensure your defensive driving eligibility, but if you meet the above requirements, you should be good to go.

How Long Does A Texas Online Defensive Driving Course Take?

Texas online defensive driving courses will take a minimum of 6 hours long. Unfortunately, in the state of Texas, defensive driving courses must be on a timer. That means, you must remain on each page of the course for a certain amount of time, even if you’ve finished reading that page.

In addition to reading the content, you must pass quizzes as well as a final exam. If you fail the quizzes, you must retake them before continuing. This can also cost you time.

And finally, there are certain parts of the course that will require you to verify your identity. Once again, this can slow the process down.

All in all, expect to spend about 7 hours on your Texas defensive driving course.

What Is Is A Texas Online Defensive Driving Course Like?

In a word – BORING. Yeah, even the online defensive driving courses recommended above will be boring. However, the courses that we recommend are the fastest and easiest courses you’ll find. They are also the lowest price. There’s no reason to spend a minute more than you need to.

Most online defensive driving courses in Texas are about the same. You sign up, and you’ll see 6 sections. Each section has about 20 – 30 pages of content, along with some videos and finally a quiz at the end. The quizzes are open-book and very easy. If you fail them, you can retake them until you pass.

At the end of the course is a final exam. If you passed the quizzes, you should have no problem passing the final exam. Over 99% of people pass it on the first 2 tries.

I recommend getting comfortable and putting on a good tv series to binge watch. The course timers suck you’ll spend a lot of time just waiting for that after you read a page.

Fortunately, you can log in and out whenever you want. So, if you want to finish the entire course in a day, that’s fine. If you want to spread it out over a week, that’s fine, too.

The courses we recommended above also work well on mobile devices, so you can even take your defensive driving course while riding the bus or anywhere else your phone gets an internet connection.

Online defensive driving in Texas is very boring, but it’s easy and much better than wasting a Saturday sitting in a classroom.

Avoid Hidden Fees With Online Defensive Driving Courses

Beware that many online defensive driving courses in Texas are sneaky with hidden fees. For example, if you procrastinate and need to have rush shipping on your completion certificate so that you can notify the court on time, that may set you back more than the course itself costs!

This is just one way that online defensive driving courses can tack on extra charges at the end, however, most of the issues can be avoided if you get it done well ahead of your required completion date.

Texas Counties Where Online Defensive Driving Courses Are Accepted

Listed below are all of the counties in Texas where online defensive driving courses are allowed. As you can see, just about every county in Texas allows you to dismiss a traffic ticket by taking an online defensive driving course.

Online Traffic School In California: The Top 4 Courses In 2021

Online Traffic School In California 2021

If you’re a driver in the state of California, there are some things you should know before signing up for traffic school. As you probably already know, the state of California allows you to dismiss traffic tickets or reduce points on your driving record by completing a California state-approved traffic school course.

Is Online Traffic School Or Classroom Traffic School Better?

One aspect of traffic school that is a bit unique in California is the ability to complete your traffic school online. Many drivers still prefer to complete their traffic school in a classroom-based course which is typically held in local public schools, community colleges, and private driving schools. So, let’s go over the differences…

Classroom Traffic Schools In California – If you decide to complete your traffic school course in a classroom, things are pretty straightforward. Simply find a traffic school course near you and give them a call to sign up. Typically, classroom-based traffic school courses are held on weekends. The course is usually either one all-day session for approximately 7 hours (with a one hour break) or the course is split up into two different days. These courses are led by approved driving instructors with all tests being completed in a classroom environment.

Online Traffic Schools In California – A fast-growing trend in California is completing traffic school online. Many drivers seem to prefer the flexibility and ease of completing a course online. For starters, most high-quality online traffic schools can be completed at your leisure. The court normally decides when you must have your traffic school completed by and you can simply take the course at your own discretion before the completion date. That means, you can log into the course and complete as little as a few minutes at a time or you can finish the entire course in the same day if you so desire. This type of flexibility is a fantastic improvement over the traditional classroom-based courses for most people.

The 4 Best California Online Traffic Schools

California Traffic Schools Are Privately Operated (And Why That Matters)

The California state government does not operate an online traffic school of their own. In fact, all traffic school courses, whether online or off, are operated by private companies. Why does this matter for you? Well, some of these private companies take their traffic school courses serious and some don’t. You need to make sure you do some research in order to find the highest quality traffic school for the cheapest price.

How To Select The Best Online Traffic School In California

Unfortunately, there are many low-quality online traffic schools in California. So, how do you find one that is of higher quality? Here are a few guidelines to follow in order to sign up for the best online traffic school…

State Approved – While this seems obvious, there are some “state-approved” traffic schools that are quite deceitful. You must make sure the traffic school you are signing up for is, in fact, a state-approved course. There are far too many online traffic schools on the market that are deceitful and charge people for courses that are not actually approved for ticket dismissal purposes. Be sure you obtain a list of certified schools from your court clerk’s office.

Good Customer Support – This is very important. You probably plan to take your online traffic school in California during non-business hours. Due to state requirements and various identity verification systems, customer service is actually something that you will likely need to use. A 9 to 5 customer service department is hardly any help if you are completing the course at 10 pm. Online traffic schools in California are notorious for having terrible customer service.

5+ Year Business History – There is no reason to sign up for the new guy on the block when there are other online traffic schools that have been in business for 2 decades or longer with millions of prior students. Check the operating history of each school and read online traffic school reviews to make sure the course you’re signing up for is reputable. Unfortunately, not all of them are.

Check The BBB Ratings – The Better Business Bureau keeps track of many online traffic schools in California. While it’s not unusual for online traffic schools to have complaints against them, you definitely want to make sure those complaints are being resolved. If they are being ignored, that is a red flag.

Course Timers Are No Longer Required In California – Some outdated online traffic schools will have a course timer throughout the course. What does this mean? Basically, you’ll have to stay on each page of the course for a pre-determined amount of time before you can progress forward. This was a state requirement many years ago but has since been removed. All the state cares about now is that you pass the course and complete all tests and quizzes in a timely manner, so make sure your course does not have those annoying timers.

Have Realistic Expectations For Your Traffic School In California

Let’s face it, traffic school is boring. Be prepared for this before starting your course. If you do take the traffic school seriously, you will probably learn some interesting information and become a safer driver, but there’s no denying the fact that you will probably get bored with it pretty quickly. Start your traffic school course early and complete it in short durations to help loosen the boredom.

What Are The BEST Online Traffic Schools In California?

Check out the list below for our top recommended online traffic school courses. These certainly aren’t your only options but they are the schools we have vetted for…

  1. iDriveSafely (Our Top Pick)
  2. GoToTrafficSchool
  3. Improv Traffic School
  4. Aceable

There are over 100 online traffic schools available in the state of California for traffic ticket dismissal, but these are the courses we have found to be the highest quality.

Helpful Tips For Passing Your Online Traffic School In California

Fortunately, the state of California makes the process fairly straightforward. You simply progress through the course and complete a quiz after each section. For most online traffic schools, there will be a total of 6 sections including 6 quizzes and a final exam at the end of the exam covering all of the course material. While the quizzes and tests are not all that difficult, it is a good idea to do a few simple things throughout the course to help increase your chances of passing.

For example, as you progress through the course, you can take screenshots of each page. That way, when you need to take a quiz, you can simply look through the various screenshots of the course and find all the answers you need. This is a sure-fire way to obtain 100% on everything.

Identity Verification Issues

If you run into any problems at all, the biggest issue will be with the various identity verification systems the state of California requires online traffic schools to utilize. This could range from asking questions only you know the answer to or even having to answer a phone call from the online traffic school customer service department. This is why it is extremely important to only sign up for an online traffic school with 24/7/365 customer support.

Notifying The Courts After Course Completion

Once again, the state of California has made this easy for you. The courts require online traffic schools to notify the court electronically and there is nothing else you need to do. Of course, it is a good idea to verify that the court has received your electronic completion certificate. Mistakes can be made and the last thing you want after taking the course is to receive no credit. Make sure you do your due diligence.

Getting Your Insurance Discount

In some cases, your auto insurance provider may give you a discount for completing an online traffic school. That means, you not only avoid having points on your record, but you may be able to save money on your premiums as well. Be sure you call your insurance agent and ask if they give discounts for successful completion of an online traffic school. Savings of up to 15% or more are not unheard of, but most drivers never contact their auto insurance provider to have this discount applied.

Reducing Driving Points Every 2 Years

When you take an online traffic school in California you can reduce your total driving points on your record. What’s more? You are able to take a traffic school every 2 years. That means, if you have substantial points on your driving record, you are able to keep reducing those points until it reaches zero – just keep taking the course every 2 years! California does not allow you to reduce your points into the negative, so if you have no points on your driving record, there is no reason to continue taking online traffic school courses.

The Most Common Online Traffic School Scams In California

With so many online traffic schools approved in California, it can be tough to weed through the scams. Here are the main scams we have seen regarding California online traffic schools…

  • Not State Certified – Some online traffic schools will give the impression they are state certified when they are actually not. This scam has decreased over the years but there are some low-quality traffic schools that still partake in this unethical practice.

  • Resellers & Third Parties – While not exactly a scam, there are a TON of “online traffic schools” which do not actually run their own traffic school courses at all. Instead, they jack up the price and basically resell you another online traffic school program. This isn’t a scam, but you will end up paying more for a course that you would otherwise be able to get cheaper if you went through them directly. Avoid third party online traffic schools in California like the plague!

  • Outrageous Shipping Fees – This is one of the most widely used tactics by online traffic schools to try and increase profits. This is actually a bigger problem in other states which require paper copies to be mailed out, but some online traffic schools in California try to sell you on expedited shipping fees for a paper copy of your certificate. Completely ignore that.

  • Rush Procession Fees – Yup, another hidden charge! It may take an online traffic school 1 to 2 weeks to process your completion certificate. Fees for rush processing can be rather expensive, so make sure you complete your online traffic school as quickly as possible and early enough to avoid this hidden fee.

What Is The Best Online Traffic School In 2021?

best online traffic school 2021

If you haven’t had the experience of going through an online traffic school while dealing with technical issues, phone calls to customer service based in some other country, being unfairly up-charged with hidden “processing fees” and outdated courses that still don’t even work on smartphones, then let me tell you, it isn’t a fun experience.

Don’t worry, I’m going to save you from all that trouble.

As a former driving instructor who created online driver training programs, I know about all the different online traffic schools available and the companies behind them. One of the reasons I created this site was to help drivers ed students sign up for a quality course, and eventually, I started reviewing defensive driving and traffic school courses as well. I’ve been through just about all of them.

I’ll get into my specific reason why a bit later, but for those who just want the fast answer, THIS is the online traffic school I recommend.

What Has Changed Since Last Year?

The best online traffic school in 2021 is actually different than my top pick in 2020. That’s because there have been some pretty big changes in the industry just over the past year. The biggest disruption was a much-needed newcomer to the online traffic school world. This online traffic school has quickly, just in the past year, become the top-selling online traffic school in just about every state where it is certified and court-approved. They also get great reviews and it is the single most modern course that exists.

On the other side of things, most existing online traffic schools have simply become worse in 2020. There are now more outdated courses than ever, and these courses are somehow still “state-approved”. Do not get sucked into one of these courses that were developed 10 or even 20 years ago. Sure, some of them have been haphazardly “updated”, but believe me, their efforts fall very short.

Common Issues With Online Traffic Schools In 2021

Online traffic schools in 2021 have unfortunately just gotten worse. Here are some of the main issues you’re likely to run into if you sign up for a poor quality or outdated course:

  • Identity Verification System Failures: This has always been a big problem with online traffic schools and it remains the biggest issue in 2021. Most states require certain identity verification systems to be used to make sure that YOU are really the one taking the course. This can be done by asking you secret questions, voice authentication, and a few other methods. Unfortunately, it is very prone to working incorrectly, in which case you’ll be locked out of your course until you call customer service. That, of course, leads to long hold times on the phone and you finally get a rep from some outsourced customer service company based in India that has no clue what they’re doing. It’s incredibly frustrating and is still an ongoing problem. If you want to go with an online traffic school that has customer service based right here in the United States (Austin, Texas to be exact) try out Aceable.
  • Crappy On Smartphones: Just about every online traffic school in 2021 boasts that they have mobile-friendly versions of their courses. “Use any device!”, they say. Yeah, well, that’s until you find out their mobile versions suck. Most of these courses were designed before smartphones, and while they have done their best to make them mobile-friendly, it just doesn’t work most of the time. Apps quit unexpectedly, you lost work, have to start chapters over, etc. Incredibly frustrating. If you want to take your course on a mobile device, this online traffic school is the only one that has built mobile apps from the ground up for each specific device.
  • Hidden Fees: What’s funny is, just about every online traffic school will say they don’t have hidden fees, but then you find out later that they do. Here’s an example – you’re a procrastinator and waited until the week before your due date to complete your online traffic school course. When you reach the end, you see that the processing time for your certificate is 10 to 14 days, which means it won’t be processed until after your due date. But wait! If you pay a low fee of $40 (or more sometimes) you can get it processed within 24 hours! This is one of the oldest tricks in the book. Once again, Aceable processes your certificate right away, which is another reason I recommend them as my top choice traffic school in 2021.
  • Horrific Customer Service: If you think you’ve experienced poor customer service before, just wait until you need to call the customer service number for an online traffic school. It’s a nightmare. Most online traffic schools in 2021 don’t even operate their own customer service, rather, they outsource it to the cheapest offshore customer service company they can find. Most of the centers you call are handling calls from multiple companies and just have a script to follow. In other words, most of the time they are useless, and you end up getting transferred from person to person until you’re finally told someone will have to call you back. Yup, here comes another plug for Aceable. While they don’t have 24hr customer service, which I’d like to see, all their customer service reps are based right in Austin, Texas.

I could probably keep listing more reasons online traffic schools continue to suck in 2021, but those are some of the things you should watch out for if you don’t sign up for my top recommended online traffic school.

Alternate Online Traffic Schools To Consider

While I’ve made it pretty clear that Aceable is my top choice online traffic school in 2021, there are some other decent options available out there, so before I wrap up this article, here are some additional online traffic schools you may want to consider.

What to Do if You’re Involved in an Auto Accident

What to Do if You’re Involved in an Auto Accident

There’s no doubt that being involved in a car accident is a frightening experience. It’s natural to feel panicked and confused, or even angry at first.

However, if you should find yourself in this situation, there are nine essential steps that you should complete in order to handle it correctly. Jot them down on a piece of paper that you keep in the glove box of your car. It’ll be a helpful “cheat sheet” to guide you through this stressful situation.

Step 1: Stay calm and get safe.

If your car is drivable, carefully maneuver it to the side of the road so you can get out of the way of oncoming traffic. If your car cannot be driven, and you are not seriously injured, exit the vehicle and move to a safe spot away from oncoming traffic. This is of particular importance if the accident occurs on a busy highway.

If the accident occurs at night, set out road flares to alert oncoming drivers. However, be mindful that road flares can spark fires from leaking fuel or other fluids. Many electronic road flares are available now which are becoming the safer alternative.

Be sure to protect the scene if there are any injured people trapped in a vehicle or on the roadway. Position your vehicle to protect them if possible, and attempt to alert traffic from a safe location.

Even if there is no fire, try to obtain fire extinguishers from your own vehicle or anyone passing by. Having a fire extinguisher and not needing it is perfectly fine, but needing one and not having it is a sure way to cause serious injuries or worse.

Step 2: Don’t apologize after a traffic accident.

Whether it’s your fault or not, don’t apologize. This implies guilt, and it can be used against you in a court case. There may be other factors that contributed to the accident that you’re not aware of, so resist the urge to say, “I’m sorry.”

Many of us apologize just to be kind, especially after a scary situation like a traffic accident. Even if it was your fault, you have the right to a defense and to protect your own interests. Stay quiet and let your insurance company work out the rest. That’s what you pay them for.

Step 3: Contact the authorities.

Call 9-1-1 as soon as possible, or inform someone close by to call 9-1-1. Make sure you know where you are located such as cross streets or mile marker posts. The dispatcher will also want to know about any injuries, the types of vehicles involved, and other time-sensitive information.

The police will write up a report and help maneuver traffic safely around the accident. Be sure to get a copy of the report or the report number to give to your insurance agent and/or attorney. Also point out any witnesses who may be able to help you.

As soon as you’re able, call your auto insurance company and notify them you’ve been in an accident. They will help guide you on what to do.

Step 4: Get witnesses to stick around after the accident.

Look around. Were there people walking nearby who saw the accident? Did any good Samaritans pull over to see if you needed help? Be sure to point these individuals out to the police so their statements can be taken. If the case goes to court, their statements can help support your claim.

If you’re able to, talk to the witnesses and get them to stick around until the police arrive. People are busy, and once they see there are no injuries they may be anxious to get on with their day. But having their statements can really help you out if you weren’t at fault.

Step 5: Provide contact information.

The police and the other driver(s) involved in the accident will need your name and insurance information. You should always keep an insurance card in your wallet and in your glove box. Jot down your name, insurance company, and policy number on a piece of paper. You do not need to provide your home address or phone number since it should be your insurance company, not you, who handles settling the claim from here on out. Make sure you get the other drivers’ names and insurance information, too. The police can facilitate the transfer of information if necessary.

Step 6: Record facts as soon as you can after the accident.

Jot down everything you can remember about the incident. Write down the date, time, weather conditions, location, and how the accident occurred. It’s best to do this as soon as possible while the details are still fresh in your mind.

There are many phone apps available that will help you document any accident scene. If you don’t have the app, take as many pictures and videos as you can. In the videos, relay any pertinent information via the audio. The more pictures and videos, the better.

Step 7: Go to the hospital – even if you feel “okay.”

Injuries often present themselves several hours after the accident has occurred. By then your body has relaxed and the adrenaline has gone, allowing you to feel the full extent of your injuries. It is important to be evaluated by a doctor so you can receive the medical treatment you need, and also to ensure that there is a record of your injuries.

Make sure you pay attention to aches and pains in your body even months after the accident. Many injuries will not present themselves for a while.

Step 8: Contact your insurance company as soon as you can after an accident

The number for your insurance company will be printed on your insurance card. Once you have a police report and have been evaluated by a doctor, contact your insurance company to report the incident. Your agent will request the police report number and the other driver(s) insurance information. Your agent will also help you make arrangements to have your car photographed, so the damage can be recorded. In addition, your agent will give you the name of your insurance company’s preferred mechanic or body shop to take your car for repairs.

Step 9: Contact an attorney if any injuries are involved.

In most cases, an attorney won’t need to get involved. If, however, the case needs to go to court, your attorney will help plead the case on your behalf and ensure that you receive adequate compensation for the damage. He or she will also help make sure that you have all the information and documented evidence needed.

If you have an attorney on retainer, contact them as soon as possible. This is especially true after an injury, whether it is you that is injured or another party. Even if the injuries seem minor, that can change in the days or weeks to come. Protect yourself!

The Fastest Defensive Driving Texas Online Courses In 2021

The Fastest Defensive Driving Texas Online Courses In 2021

There’s no denying it, you live a busy life. With work, the kids, school, and other commitments, you are always on the go. One day, during that hustle and bustle, you were caught speeding or performing an aggressive driving maneuver while behind the wheel. The officer gave you a ticket, and you were forced to take time out of your already hectic schedule to head to court. Once in court, part of the sentence handed down by the judge was to attend a defensive driving Texas course.

A defensive driving Texas course? How are you going to find the time to complete that?

Does this sound familiar? If so, you’re in luck. There are defensive driving Texas courses that can be completed online in a short amount of time. You have already been through enough of a headache dealing with the ticket itself – you should not create more of a headache for yourself when having to complete your defensive driving course. Take one of the fastest defensive driving Texas online courses available to make the process convenient and painless.

THIS Is The Fastest Defensive Driving Course In Texas

The Perks Of An Online Course

Taking a defensive driving Texas course has many benefits, such as getting a ticket expunged from your record. But the biggest benefits are seen from the ability to take the course online.

  • Flexibility – With an online course, there is no specific time that you need to be sitting at a desk in a classroom. If you only have a few minutes, you can squeeze in a quick lesson and continue studying later. Many defensive driving Texas online courses will allow you to logout, and then later login to resume where you had left off. Most defensive driving Texas online courses also offer their programs on phones or tablets, meaning you can complete the course anytime, anywhere. This convenience cannot be overstated, nor can it be matched by a classroom program.
  • No Commuting – One of the conditions of your sentencing may have been that you are not allowed to drive, depending on the severity of your infraction. Even if you are allowed to drive, you may not feel comfortable driving doing so again until you have completed your defensive driving Texas course. Instead of worrying about how you are going to get to your course, you can simply complete the course from the convenience of your own home. For that matter, you can complete it on the couch in pajamas if you’d like!
  • Complete The Course At Your Pace – If you would like to complete the course in a couple hours, you can certainly do so. Being able to take your defensive driving Texas course online gives you the flexibility to complete the course as you’d like. No matter if you are a fast learner or a slow learner, the ability to take the course online can grant you peace of mind, knowing that there will be no pressure to complete the course or “keep up” with the rest of the class. This is about your driving habits and tendencies, so you should complete the course in a manner that works best for you.
  • If Your Pace Is “Fast,” You’re In Luck – Why would you like to complete the course as quickly as possible? No one cares for an inconvenience, and the quicker you complete the course, the sooner it will be over! Perhaps more importantly, you will be able to get your life back as soon as possible. Completing the course quickly will allow you to get back to the open road again, two hands on the wheel. Completing your defensive driving Texas course online is guaranteed to be the fastest way to complete your course. Simply put, it is the easiest way to complete the requirement and get your life back on track.

What Are The Fastest Defensive Driving Texas Online Courses?

The good news is when selecting an online defensive driving course, you have the option to choose from a few reputable sources. All the courses can be completed as quickly as you would like, and are the fastest online defensive driving courses available. Below are some of our favorite fastest online defensive driving courses available to Texas residents.

  • ApprovedCourse.com There is nothing that indicates a fast course more than the fact that this course does not require a final exam. The course offers a 100% video option, as well. You take short, multiple-choice quizzes after each lesson in the course. With our special offer, you will pay a mere $25 out-of-pocket. The company guarantees that you will not find a more affordable course. The course also offers customer service, day or night, weekends and holidays. Additionally, the course offers rapid certificate processing, making it one of the fastest courses available.
  • GetDefensive.com This course is a big proponent of animations and streaming videos that help make your online defensive driving Texas course as easy and quick as possible. They offer two options, a text-based course and an online video course; you can choose the course that best fits your needs. Additionally, this course offers an audio read-along that narrates the course aloud as you follow along with the text. Many students find that this is a beneficial way to retain information. This course is also offering enrollment for $25 and offers a U.S.-based customer support center. If you are looking for fast and simple, you should absolutely consider this course.
  • Aceable.com The creators of this course were the first to create a native app that offered state-approved defensive driving courses. This is the top-rated defensive driving app available. Being able to complete the course on your mobile device allows you to complete the course as quickly as possible. For $25, this online defensive driving Texas online course can be completed in as little as six hours. The course curriculum is accepted by all Texas courts. By working through the courses’ mobile app, you can directly dismiss your ticket. Additionally, the company offers overnight certificate delivery, making it one of the fastest courses available.

Complete Your Course Today

With so many options, there is no excuse not to complete your online defensive driving Texas course as soon as possible. Get your life, and driving ability, back as soon as possible. Complete a fast course in a few hours, and reap the rewards the next time you get behind the wheel.

The 4 Best Online Defensive Driving Courses In Texas

5 Stupid Things You Should Never Do After a Car Accident

What Not To Do After A Car Accident

It’s scary, isn’t it?

You’ve just been involved in a car wreck. Your heart is pounding. Your life is flashing before your eyes. You check yourself over. Nothing appears to be broken, and you’re not bleeding. Now what?

This is where most people let their emotions get the better of them. Don’t freak out and do these 5 unusually stupid things.

VIDEO: What To Do After A Car Accident

Driving Off After An Accident

Almost every state has a Vehicle Code or Transportation Code. If they do not, then it will be codified in the state’s “penal code.” Either way, leaving the scene of an accident is considered a “hit and run,” and is a misdemeanor or felony.

Insurance companies don’t look too kindly on the practice, either. Your insurance rates will skyrocket, you may not be able to afford coverage, and the state may revoke your driving privileges. In short, even if you don’t have ill intentions, you should absolutely NEVER drive off after a car accident.

Be VERY Careful If You Decide To “Protect” The Accident Scene

You may actually be erasing key evidence if a crime has been committed. Let the police do the detective work. You hang back and protect yourself. Also, insurance companies need to know the details of the accident, so you don’t want to change or alter anything on your vehicle before an adjuster has had a chance to look at it.

Finally, this is for your own safety. If you try to block off the scene on a busy road, you may put yourself in more danger. Get in your vehicle, if it is safe, and wait for help. If it’s not safe, move to a safe location away from your vehicle and call for emergency service.

Never, Ever Say “I’m Sorry” After An Accident

When you admit guilt, you are setting yourself up to take legal responsibility. Never do this without a lawyer present. If the other driver gets a confession from you, you might unwittingly give up all future rights in any lawsuit or insurance case against you. Even in cases where it may be obvious you were at fault, you should never admit to any wrongdoing after you have had a car accident. The laws are very clear about how you do not need to self incriminate yourself, so don’t!

Avoid Negotiating With The Other Driver At The Scene

Some drivers are tempted to negotiate directly with the other person involved in the accident, for fear their insurance rates will increase if they go through their insurance company. Usually, negotiating is a bad idea. You can’t be sure the other person is honest. If they hand you a check, it may not be good. If they offer cash, you don’t know where it came from.

People tend to avoid going through their insurer when there is something to hide. Keep things on the up and up, and you won’t have any legal problems later.

Forgetting To Document Everything Can Be Costly

Most people know to take pictures of damage to both vehicles. However, what you might forget to do is write down everything about the scene. It seems like overkill, but your memory will fade fast. By the time police arrive, you’ll have completely forgotten some of the finer details — details important to the accident.

For example, the police will want to know who was driving, which direction each driver was going, where you were going, and so on. They will also want to know the circumstances of the accident to determine fault. You will also want to file a police report and get the officer’s name and badge number.

Your insurance adjuster will also want to know all about the accident in vivid detail.

You should write down the VIN number for the other vehicle, the make, model, and year of the vehicle, and its color. If you can get driver information, do it. Take down the driver’s name, driver’s license number, and at least get the name of the other person’s insurance.

Getting the tag information lets you track down someone if they flee the scene before the police arrive.

Take pictures of the accident from several angles. The goal is to get pictures of the damage in context. This means anyone looking at the photos should have an idea of the size, scale, and extent of the damage.

If you’re injured, and EMT arrives, make sure you get a copy of all medical records related to the accident and your injuries before you leave the hospital.

Final Thoughts

Being in a car accident is scary, and it’s easy to slip up and make mistakes at the scene. That’s why you should keep a checklist of things to do in the event of an accident right in the car with you at all times. Shove it in the glovebox. That way, if you’re in an accident, you don’t have to think. You just do.

iDriveSafely Online Traffic School Review For 2021

iDriveSafely Review 2021

There are a lot of online traffic schools you can sign up for, but iDriveSafely is by far one of the most popular online traffic schools out there. They have been in business for more than 2 decades and have had more than 5 million people go through their online courses. In this iDriveSafely online traffic school review, we will be specifically looking at their traffic school courses.

What States is iDriveSafely Available In?

As of 2021, iDriveSafely is available in the following states.

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Idaho
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • North Dakota
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin

Yes, iDriveSafely Is A High-Quality Online Traffic School

I’ll get into why iDriveSafely is high quality a bit later one, but I know many of you are just looking for a quick answer as to whether iDriveSafely is legit or not. The answer is YES, this is one of the best online traffic schools you can sign up for. While there are several good online traffic school options available out there, this one definitely ranks as one of the best courses. For those of you who want to know exactly why, I’ll talk about that in the remainder of this iDriveSafely review.

U.S. Based 24/7/365 Customer Support

Perhaps the biggest problem with lower quality online traffic schools is the level of customer service provided. Or better put, the level of customer support that is NOT provided.

Why is having high-quality customer support so important? One big reason is due to state requirements that any legit online traffic school must implement. One requirement many states have is an identity verification system. Basically, they want to make sure YOU are really the one taking the course. The way the accomplish this is by asking you questions only you would really know, such as “what are the first 3 digits of your social security number?” or “what is the last number/letter on your vehicle’s license plate? or “which of the following credit cards do you own?” Stuff like that.

The problem is if you get too many of these obscure questions incorrect, you will be locked out of the course until you contact customer service to have it unlocked for you. This issue is all too frequent, and there’s nothing like waiting on hold for 30 minutes to speak with someone in some faraway country to try and get your traffic school course unlocked.

iDriveSafely has a dedicated office in California with a fully staffed 24/7/365 customer support staff that you can reach via live chat, phone, or email. They are one of the very few online traffic schools that actually provide a high-quality customer support system.

A+ Better Business Bureau Rating

A lot of people say the Better Business Bureau is just one big scam so that the BBB can make some money by charging companies for “memberships” and “certifications”. With that said, when a company has an A+ BBB rating and advertises it on their site, you better believe it’s important to them to keep that rating. Let’s just assume for a moment that you are not able to resolve an issue with their customer support team. The next step is to file a complaint with the BBB, which is a very quick and easy online process. While it’s nice that they have an A+ BBB rating as it shows they have a good reputation, it’s also nice to have that extra leverage. Many of the lower quality online traffic schools don’t bother to care about BBB ratings.

Courses Are Constantly Updated

One of the great things about taking your traffic school online is that you can do it from wherever and whenever. Want to take it from your computer? Great! Want to do it from your iPhone or tablet? Well, that might be a problem. Some online traffic school courses are STILL not mobile / tablet friendly. Many even require the use of Flash which the iPhone doesn’t even support. If they can’t even provide mobile / tablet friendly versions of their traffic school, just imagine how outdated the coursework is going to be!

As technology advances, the iDriveSafely traffic school courses get updated. Not only are they mobile / tablet friendly, but they have included videos and animations to keep things a bit more interesting. Heck, you can even take the whole thing in a video-based course for some states if you want. This is one of the most frequently updated online traffic schools you’ll find, whereas many other courses haven’t been updated in years.

It’s The Fastest Course Allowed By State Law

No matter where you live, iDriveSafely is going to be the fastest online traffic school you are allowed to take. In some states, “course timers” are required by law. That means, if it is supposed to take you 6 hours to complete, you will be restricted on your progress so that the course really does take 6 hours. There’s nothing iDriveSafely can do about that, but fortunately, you don’t have to complete it all at once. You can log in and out whenever you want. I also recommend you have a movie ready to go. When you hit that course timer, you can always watch part of your movie while it counts down. The course will be as quick as state law allows.

In other states where no course timers are required, you can blow through it as fast as you can take and pass the quizzes after each chapter. The quizzes are super easy and some people are able to get through the entire course in about an hour.

Pros Of iDriveSafley

iDriveSafely has been around for decades and makes the process very easy. They are typically the lowest priced traffic school and are also the fastest. In each state they are certified in, they make the course the state mandated minimum

The course works well on phones and tablets, and they provide pretty decent customer service should you need it.

Overall, there’s nothing overly special about iDriveSafely, but they simply help you get it done as fast and easy as possible.

Cons Of iDriveSafely

While iDriveSafely is a good online traffic school and driver’s ed school, some of their course material is getting a bit outdated. This doesn’t really take away from the overall teaching and information that you receive, but you might need to watch some videos that are legit straight out of the 90’s.

Other than that, iDriveSafely is one of the most popular online driver’s ed and traffic school courses in the country, so it’s a pretty safe bet.

Overall Conclusion About The iDriveSafely Online Traffic School Course

Overall, this is definitely among the top 3 online traffic schools out there. I can’t promise that you’re going to have a wonderful time. Let’s face it, traffic school sucks and it’s boring. In addition to learning about driving safety, I think we can all agree that traffic school is a bit like a punishment and deterrent as well.

TimeForTrafficSchool.com Review For 2021

Time For Traffic School Review 2021

Let’s face it: traffic school is inconvenient. When you’ve been stopped for a traffic violation, all you want to do is get it over with as fast as possible, even if it means paying a hefty fine. After all, enrolling in a class is just too much trouble. Right? TimeForTrafficSchool.com prioritizes speed and convenience with a program that allows students to progress at their own pace, from the comfort of their own home.

Once you’ve been charged with a traffic violation, always check with your court to see if you have the option to go to traffic school instead of–or in conjunction with–paying a fine. Even if the fine isn’t dismissed entirely, courts will typically reduce the amount you’re required to pay if you agree to go to traffic school. Most importantly, you may find that going to traffic school will keep the violation from being reported on your record. This makes traffic school worth the time, though it’s still something most of us want to get through as fast as possible. That’s where TimeForTrafficSchool.com comes in.

DMV licensed in all counties in California, you can enroll with Time For Traffic School regardless of the county in which you received your ticket. If you have permission from your court to enroll in traffic school, you can sign up and complete the course in less than a day.

Process For Time For Traffic School

Signing up for Time For Traffic School is easy. Simply visit TimeForTrafficSchool.com and click the sign up button. You will be directed to a page that asks for some basic personal information, including your name and email address. Make sure you have your ticket handy, as you will also be required to enter your ticket, case or citation number; court; court due date; and county. When entering your county and court, make sure you select where the citation was actually received.

After you’ve entered your information, you will be asked to pay a onetime fee of $18.95. Unfortunately, this cost is not covered when you pay your ticket as traffic schools are privately owned. However, Time For Traffic School promises no hidden fees. Best of all, they provide two great services to ensure your satisfaction:

Refund Policy: If at any time before passing the final exam you decide that Time For Traffic School isn’t the right course for you, simply contact them through their support email and they will refund your money. No questions asked.

Students are given two chances to pass the final exam with a score of 70% or higher. If you do not pass after two attempts, you can choose to have your payment refunded. You also have the option to take the course again with no additional charge.

Once you complete the course and pass the final exam, Time For Traffic School will electronically submit your results to your court and DMV the same day. There is nothing for you to mail in or worry about upon completion of the course. Additionally, they will email you proof of your completion for your records.

Course Requirements

ll you need to enroll in Time For Traffic School is a computer with Internet access. There are no workbooks, nor are you required to install any special software. The course is available 24/7 and can be accessed from any computer, anywhere, as long as you have your username and password.

The amount of time you have to complete the course depends solely on your court. If you are in a hurry–or simply a fast reader–it’s entirely possible to go through all the material in one sitting. However, you are free to take as long as you need, depending on your schedule and court requirements, and spread out the material over several sessions. As soon as you complete the course, Time For Traffic School will timestamp the exact date and time of completion. As long as you complete the course on or before your required due date, you will meet DMV requirements.

When you begin the exam, you will be asked a few questions to confirm your identity. You will be required to answer these questions periodically to ensure that the same person is taking the exam. This is ID verification that is required in all counties in California.

Traffic school doesn’t have to be a hassle. TimeForTrafficSchool.com knows that you have better things to do with your life, and their fast and convenient process reflects that. Next time you get stuck with a traffic violation, don’t just rush through and pay the fine. Time For Traffic School can quickly and easily spare you a fine–and a violation on your record. What more could you want?

The 4 Best Online Traffic Schools In 2021

How To Safely Jump Start Your Car

How To Jump Start Your Car

Inevitably, it will happen to you – and never at a convenient time. You need to go somewhere, you get in your car, hit the ignition, and nothing happens – not even a click. Sadly, you’re the victim of a dead battery. If you’re in luck, either you had the foresight to keep jumper cables in your trunk, or you’ll find someone who has a set. So now you can turn a potential headache into a minor annoyance. Jump start your car and be on your way. Just be sure to do it safely. Here’s how:

Step 1

First, open your hood and check the condition of your battery. Look over the casing to make sure there are no cracks. Protecting your fingers from either grime or battery acid, use a piece of paper to lightly wriggle each battery post to make sure they have not broken loose. If one or both terminals is heavily corroded, use a cloth to wipe the corrosion away. [If you are at home, it would be a good idea to clean corrosion away. You can do this with a wire brush and a solution of baking soda and water. Pour the solution over the terminal and brush away the corrosion. Then use clean towels to wipe the top of the battery and the terminals dry. This will ensure a good connection when you jump start your car.]

Step 2

Next, check your jumper cables. If there is any corrosion on the clamps, clean them in the same way as you did your terminals. Now, check the polarity of your cables. Most cables designate positive (+) with a red handle and negative (-) with a black handle. When you make your connections, you will want to be sure that these match up properly. Note: Some older cars – particularly British cars – are positive ground. So long as you keep the polarities correct, this does not matter.

Step 3

Now it is time to make your connections. Position the boosting car close to the car with the dead battery. Do not let them touch. Turn off the ignition and all accessories for both cars. This is the step where you must take the most caution, because there is potential for sparks to ignite flammable gases. So you do not want any active electrical circuits. It is a good idea, if you have one, to lay a towel over your battery to “absorb” any gases the battery may emit. But make sure no loose ends come near any moving parts.

Step 4

Next, set the parking brake in both cars and place both in either park (P) for an automatic transmission, or neutral (N) for a manual transmission. Now attach the jumper cables. Be careful to not let the ends of the jumper cables come into contact with one another while making your connections. At the very least, you will get a “shocking” surprise; at the worst, you could damage a battery. Follow this sequence:

1. Connect the positive cable clip (red) to the dead battery’s positive terminal.
2. Connect the other positive cable (red) to the boost car’s positive terminal.
3. Connect the negative cable clip (black) to the battery’s negative terminal.
4. Finally – and this is important – do not make your final connection on the negative terminal of the dead battery. Instead, attach this clip to a bare piece of metal – a bolt or a strut – of that car. This is your ground – or earth – connection.

Note: As referenced earlier, some cars are positive ground. In this case, connect negative to negative, attach one cable to the boosting car’s positive terminal, and then ground the other positive cable to bare metal on the receiving car.

Step 5

Start the engine of the boost car and let it run for a couple of minutes to charge the dead battery. [Some car manufacturers advise you to not run the engine of the boosting car because, if a connection is broken, you could damage the electronics in one or both cars. Check your owner’s manual to see if they warn against this.] One way to see if the dead battery is charging is to turn on the dome light in the receiving car. If it lights, then the battery is getting sufficiently charged.

Step 6

Try starting the car with the dead battery. If it does not start, rev the engine of the boost car, let it run for a minute or two, and try again. Once your engine starts, let it idle for a few minutes to charge the battery. Then disconnect the jumper cables in the reverse order to which you connected them. Again, be careful to not touch the ends of the jumper cables to anything while you do this.

That’s it! You’ve turned a major headache into a minor inconvenience. Now you can go on with your day.