Skip to main content

The Globe and Mail

What should I do if my wife can’t reach the pedals of our minivan?

My wife has difficulty driving our minivan. She has to extend her toes to reach the gas and brake pedals. She has moved the driver's seat forward, but can only move it so far. This seems very unsafe to me. Is there any safe attachment that she could put on the pedals so she can reach them with more of her foot? – Robert

The inability to place her foot firmly on the pedals is not my only concern. If the seat is fully forward and she can still barely reach the pedals, I will have to assume that she is also sitting very close to the steering wheel and ultimately the driver's side airbag.

Even with recent improvements to air bag deployment that accommodate varying driver/occupant sizes and impact speeds, it is still generally recommended that the driver's chest be at least 25 centimetres from the steering wheel.

Story continues below advertisement

Pedal extenders can be installed, which will offer her sure-footed confidence, but I doubt that they also assist in achieving a superior sitting position. Plus, once these pedal extenders are installed in the van, they may negatively affect all other drivers.

Perhaps a dedicated car, just for her, set up by professionals? Otherwise, maybe it's time to head back into the marketplace and search for a vehicle that features superior seat adjustment, telescoping steering wheels and adjustable pedals.

Your van likely has at least a couple of these features, but sitting positions vary widely between manufacturers and need to be explored.

Lou Trottier is owner-operator of All About Imports in Mississauga. Have a question about maintenance and repair? E-mail globedrive@globeandmail.com, placing "Lou's Garage" in the subject area.

Shopping for a new car? Check out the new Globe Drive Build and Price Tool to see the latest discounts, rebates and rates on new cars, trucks and SUVs. Click here to get your price.

Video: Mercedes-Benz unveils its first pickup, but it’s not coming to Canada
Report an error
Comments

The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

We’ve made some technical updates to our commenting software. If you are experiencing any issues posting comments, simply log out and log back in.

Discussion loading… ✨

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Thank you!

You are now subscribed to the newsletter at

You can unsubscribe from this newsletter or Globe promotions at any time by clicking the link at the bottom of the newsletter, or by emailing us at privacy@globeandmail.com.