Maybe This Explains It

Have you noticed  how no one seems to use turn signals any more?

You know, they’re those clicking lights on the back and front of the vehicle which tell other drivers where you plan to go.  Every car has a control for those lights, so why is no one using them?

Maybe this explains it:

That’s an actual photo of a page in the Quick Reference Guide for my new 2019 Ford Escape.

As you can see, there are many features indicated, including Wiper Controls – but nowhere are Turn Signal Controls noted.

Still confused?  (I know I am.)

Here’s a photo of the opposite side of the same page in the Quick Reference Guide:

So many things listed! Including the aforesaid Wiper Controls – but nothing about turn signals.  And I know my new car has them because I do, in fact, use them.

Just out of curiosity, I then pulled out the actual 2019 Escape Owner’s Manual.  A quick review of the Index at the back of the book shows no reference of any kind to turn signals.  But there are references to pretty much anything else you could think of, including “Sitting in the Correct Position” – which, in my opinion, might be difficult to do if you’ve been run into because you failed to use a turn signal.

Am I the only person in this country who still looks for, and uses, turn signals?  Is there a reason car manufacturers make no effort to tell new drivers where the controls might be?

Just one more conundrum for an old lady to figure out.

Because I have nothing better to do today.  It’s a rainy, crappy day, and I don’t feel like going out into traffic – where no one will be using turn signals (nor obeying traffic laws in any other way, at least in my neighborhood).

Happy Friday, everyone.  Stay safe and warm.

PS:  For those who might be wondering why I was perusing the owner’s manual in the first place – my new car does not have a CD player and I wanted to verify that it has the proper inputs to link up a portable player.  Which, thankfully, it allegedly does – I’ll find out for sure when my new player arrives from Amazon and I try to plug it in.  I’m too lazy to download my entire CD collection to an MP3 player and then try to figure out how to get that to work, and my request for volunteers to do so for me went unanswered.


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Images by Cordelia’s Mom/TeddyRosalie Studio, except as noted

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21 Responses to Maybe This Explains It

  1. In Atlanta, not only do they NOT use turn signals, but more often than not, they turn from the wrong lane. I’ve become a very defensive driver here! How do you like your new Ford?


  2. Marc Beebe says:

    Now look for the headlight controls.
    Yes indeed, an over-abundance of controls – most of them multi-function – has resulted in the most basic and sometimes most important of them being left out of mention.
    Here’s a blast from the past: the old Borgwards (of which I had 8) had no labels of any kind on the dash knobs; they all looked identical. Herr Borgward’s reasoning was you were supposed to read the owners’ manual and learn what does what.


    • Wow, I had to look up Borgwards because I never heard of them.

      As for the headlights – I missed that. The high beam control is on the same stalk as the turn signals, and the lighting switch itself is on the dash underneath, so maybe that explains it. Or maybe new drivers don’t need to know where the light controls are either, since most new cars are set to automatic lights. But then so are wipers these days, and Ford manages to cover that. Go figure.


  3. We use turn signals. Both of us. I think, overall, in the country drivers are more courteous. It may be that there’s simply less traffic. Not always, but usually.


  4. I am the other person who still uses her turn signals, including into my driveway, which is on an obscure deadens road.



  5. AmyRose🌹 says:

    I just automatically use my turn signals every time I turn, CM. I’ve just gotten into the habit of doing it. It irks me when others don’t use their turn signals. It is safe defensive driving and curtesy to the other drivers. Simps as that. And yes my car has a lot of do-dads on the steering wheel itself which to tell you the truth I don’t even use hardly. What a waste.


  6. Dan Antion says:

    I think not using turn signals is part of the general “driving like I’m the only person on the road” trend. I see more turns without signals, turns from the wrong lane, left turns on red, U-Turns on red and other blatant behavior that breaks the laws we learned about when we learned how to drive.

    I acquiesced to not having a CD Player. I just plug my phone in and go from there. Getting music from where you have it to where you want is is not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. I gave up, copied my entire music library to my phone. None of the methods for doing that (that I read on line) worked. I was finally able to do it, but don’t ask me to explain (actually, I did try once, in a blog post – search my place for Enya).


  7. markbialczak says:

    I uniformly use my turn signals, CM, and also regularly mutter at those around me who fail to use theirs.


  8. Archon's Den says:

    At least you can usually see the signal-not-users. I don’t drive much in the dark anymore. Twice in the last week I’ve almost rear-ended idiots. Their headlights come on because of a photos-cell, but there’s no light in the back until they hit the brakes – and I nearly hit them. They also don’t show that they’re there with turn signals, because they don’t move out of the fast lane, where they’re doing 10 MPH under the limit. 😳


  9. nickc324 says:

    That’s crazy! Why wouldn’t they put those in the manuals? I agree about the lack of turn signal use. I don’t know why people don’t always use them. I use them all of the time.


    • I guess the manual writers just assume that everyone knows where those controls are, or that they figure why bother since so few people actually use them. I’m glad you do. Warning other drivers of a planned turn can prevent a rear-end collision (assuming they’re paying attention in the first place, of course).

      Liked by 1 person

  10. joey says:

    I use my turn signals. I promise. Sometimes, so habitually, I’ve used them to turn into my driveway where absolutely no else is around…
    Good observation. I am more deeply concerned with those who do not turn on their headlights at dusk… All the cars still come with headlights, right?


    • Ah, yes, the invisible headlights. You’d think that wouldn’t be a problem any more since the newer cars all have automatic headlights (assuming the driver doesn’t turn off the “automatic” setting).

      Then there’s the opposite problem – those who use high beams when they don’t need to, thereby blinding oncoming drivers. That may be even worse than those who don’t use the headlights at all.

      Liked by 1 person

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