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14 Most Common Mistakes Made by RC Cars Beginners, You Should Know About!

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Hello, RC cars lovers, how are you doing? Fine for sure, right?

Today in this post we are going to learn about 14 most common mistakes made by RC cars beginners which you wish you have known!  Most of us must have made one of them.

Nowadays, many people are leaning towards RC cars racing as a professional hobby but there are some very important things to consider before you start your thrilling RC cars journey! Many beginners in this hobby don’t have much knowledge or information related to RC cars.

Some of their confusion include which RC car they should choose, how to take care of their RC car, and how to replace or upgrade some worn out parts from their cars. Here, we have prepared a list of the 14 most common mistakes made by RC cars beginners.

So let’s get started to gather some interesting information.

1.Ignore The User Manual

Whether it’s a new toy like an RC car or any other electronic items we always try to put it together and use it as soon as possible by ourselves!

Most of the people don’t use the user manual which is always provided along with the product by the company for ease of use and avoid possible problems. However, we often ignore this important document and throw away with the box once we open it.

In fact, it is not the correct way to do it. Instead, we should always use the user manual which comes with an RC car, for a better understanding of our new purchase. Even when we buy a used RC car, we should request the user manual from the previous owner as possible, so that when we want to buy an option part we can still find the part number in the manual.  If you do not have the manual for some reason, you can find it online.  Usually, the manufacturer has uploaded one online.

A week ago, I purchased a used DHK 1/8 buggy. It did not come with the manual, so I did a search online. I found the DHK manual. Here are me and my RC car.

2. Not Choosing The Right RC Car to Buy!

To get into the RC car is usually expensive as you need to buy a lot of other things along with the RC cars you are interested in. As a beginner, if you are not buying an RTR, you need to get a battery, charger, a radio control system, a servo and a set of tools. Here is a post on how to get into RC hobby.

It doesn’t matter whether you are a beginner or an experienced RC Cars hobbyist you always have to choose the right RC car depending upon your requirements. Some people think that you can just buy the car you like, but it does not work that way. Here are the reasons why.

Place where you can play

You need to think carefully about what you really want, and where you can run your car. For example, if you want an off road car for bashing, you need to check if there is at least an open rocky/sandy place near your home. On the other hand, if you want to get into on-road racing, you need to check where the nearest race track is; in case you find nothing, you will have trouble practicing your RC driving skills. On-road bashing is quite boring. For example, I have a Tamiya TT02, but I seldom playing with it as the nearest race track is 2-hour one-way trip away from my home. I only can play with it once a month if I am lucky.  What a waste!


When you are buying an RC car, you should also consider their sizes. For an RC car, you can buy a variety of sizes from 1/32 to 1/5, being the 1/5 the largest, and 1/32 the smallest. If you live in a neighborhood you cannot find a large open space, you should buy a smaller RC car so that you can play in a small park or alike. If your home is large enough, you might consider getting any car of 1/12 or smaller, and play with it at home.  In many cities, people are into playing Kyosho mini-z just like the one below.


Also, you need to make the right choice between a brushed RC car and a brushless one. If you make a wrong decision, you might waste some of your hard earned money. Sure, you can start your hobby with a lower priced brushed RC car, but very soon, you will feel the need of a fast RC car, and then put some working parts aside in order to upgrade to a brushless system. Here is a post on what you really need in order to upgrade your RC car.

3. Excessive use of water while washing your RC car

In our day to day life, excessive use of anything is never good. If you eat too much, you will get sick. If you exercise too much, you would feel muscle pain. For your RC car, you should always use a limited amount of water to wash or clean your RC car because, even all of your electronic components are waterproof, using excessive water may cause rusting and other internal system failures.

Here is a post on how to clean your RC car.

Whenever you use water to clean up your car, keep in mind not to use it on the electronic components otherwise it may lead to a short circuit! Even after you drive your RC cars through mud, do not think that you should use a lot of water to clean up your superb racer. Otherwise, you will get more trouble than just a dirt car!

4. Overlook the importance of having a set of suitable tires

Each and every component of your RC car is as useful and important as your body parts. Our body uses legs to walk and hands to create something from our mind. Just like those in our body, the tires are important components in an RC car. Because the cars depend on their tires to move to different locations, you should always choose high-quality tires according to your RC car type. If your RC car is for off-road conditions, then you should go for spiked ones which are better on off-road terrains. On the hand, if your RC car is for on-road then you should choose the tires with light patterns designed for that purpose. If you choose the wrong tires, either your tires get damaged or your car cannot run at its full potential, so, never underestimate the value of tires in your RC car!

There is a post talking about the right tires for RC crawlers/rock racers

5. Usage of Wrong Tools for Tune-up!

There is always a solution available for any problem; we just have to find and choose the right one to overcome any difficulty. There is a suitable tool available for various kinds of upgrades and tune-ups in an RC car.
But if you use the wrong tools on your RC car, you may end up damaging some parts of it! For example, to cut the body shell, you should never use a pair of regular scissors. Instead, you need a pair with a curved edge for the purpose. Moreover, you need to use a screwdriver of the right size in order not to strip your screws.  Furthermore, you should use screw glue to tighten your screws instead of using super glue to lock them up deadly.  Just remember, you must always use the right tools for fixing a particular problem.

6. Charging Up Your LIPO batteries Overnight

Batteries are very important in an RC car because the car gets the power to run from it. Thus, you should have your battery fully charged before you play with your RC car. However, you should never charge your LIPO overnight as you need attention while charging. If you have your battery charged during sleep, you cannot stop any bad accidence from happening. There are several cases in which a fire took place due to LIPO exploded. Thus, you should be next to your LIPO while it is being charged. Here is a post about the different types of batteries used for RC cars.

7. Being Careless While Building Your RC car

We should always be patient while doing something important. As an RC car beginner, most of the people get careless while building their first RC car in the excitement they feel! They just want to put it together as quickly as possible, and rock n roll on the roads. This is the reason why so many RTRs are being sold in the market. However, it really just doesn’t work like that because any newbie to RC cars hobby should always follow the user manual and build it step by step for a successful project. For example, they might ruin a body shell if they do not follow the exact step for painting it. Here is a post on how to paint an RC body.

8. Excessive Buying, and Using Too Many Spare/Upgrade Parts!

Whenever we buy a new RC car, we tend to rush to buy some spare/upgrade parts for it. We believe that by doing that,  we can easily replace broken parts easily without going to buy the item in the market. However, it is not really necessary as you can order these items online and receive them within a week or so. If you get the items in advance, you will have a pile of spare/upgrade parts that are not in use. For this reason, you should always try to save your money by buying the required spare parts only! Only buying parts when they are broken is the way to go.

To upgrade our RC car, we can choose to replace the original plastic parts with aluminum parts. However, we might over-do it in our belief that aluminum parts are always better than the plastic parts. Here is a post how you should use aluminum parts in your RC.

9. Lack Of A Proper Working Area

An RC car contains so many tiny parts, so you might lose one or two small items if you do not have a proper area to work on it. If you do not have one, then it would be a good idea to get one set up! You do not want to spend your valuable time to search for that item on your floor, don’t you?

If you really find a proper working area anywhere in your house, just like me.  You should at least have a tray for your small item.  Sooner or later, you will need a repair station for your racer.


10. Being Nervous To Take Your RC Car Apart!

Taking your RC car apart completely helps you to increase knowledge about it in depth. If you are afraid of taking it apart, you will miss the opportunity for gaining your experience in this hobby. Instead, you should use the user manual as your guide to explore the inside of your racer. As time passes you will get along with your RC car and gain enough information about it.

11. Not Using A Fan When Necessary

After running your RC car for more 15 minutes, the motor of your car would be very hot; it will happen if your motor is high power one and your gear mesh is not set correctly.
In order to cool your motor down, you should always install a good quality inside your RC car. The cooling fan will drop down the motor temperature, then it can increase the performance of your car. Here is a post on why installing a fan in your RC car is necessary

12. Not Setting Up Your Car According to Road Conditions

The tune-up process is widely based on the terrain where you intend to drive your RC car. If you want to run it as an off-road racer, then you have to change the tires and suspension according to it. On the other hand, if you want to run it as an on-roader then you have to make changes according to it like lowering the suspension and change the tires. If you don’t upgrade your vehicle according to different road condition, it will not run at its full capability.

Here is a post on how to set up your suspension for your RC cars

13. Not Paying Attention to Driving On Different Terrains

You should always drive safely and at an appropriate speed. Because some of the beginners always try to go full speed as they can, but as a result, their RC cars get seriously damaged. It will open the door for upgrading!  Instead, if they drive on a street, they should always drive as safe as possible; otherwise, its car might get in a crash – hurting one or two pedestrians on a road. If possible, avoid driving your RC car on a busy street.  Also, if you are driving a big RC car, the car can become quite dangerous at its full speed.

14. Did not buy from your local hobby shop

Finally, if you an RC car beginner, you should buy from your local shop as they usually can give good technical support to your newly purchased RC car. Some of them even organize a monthly racing event so that you should join their fun. For the parts, if they are really cheap, you can still buy some of them online.


If you have gained any useful information from this post, then don’t forget to share this post with your other RC car lover friends! Also, please don’t forget to write down your experience as a beginner in the RC cars hobby.!

Check out an RC car manual here.

Thanks for reading this post. Hope you enjoy reading it.
Written by Sidharth Kushvah
Edited by Carlos Santos, your webmaster.

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