The warning comes from motoring experts at LeaseCar.uk who identified 13 lesser known parking rules which could land inexperienced drivers in hot water.
New drivers may be surprised to discover that parking their car a distance of 50cm or more from the kerb could result in a steep fine.
Even leaving a vehicle for a matter of moments could leave the driver with a hefty fine if the engine is not turned off.
Here are the 13 obscure UK parking laws:
1. To park more than 50cm away from the kerb could lead to an on the spot fine being issued.
2. When using any designated space, a car is not considered ‘in’ the space if the wheels are over any lines and could be ticketed.
3. Parking on a dropped curb could see a fixed penalty notice applied.
4. Putting out cones, bins or other obstacles to reserve a parking space is not permitted, as it could be interpreted as causing an obstruction resulting in a fine.
5. The engine must be turned off in a parked car, even if the driver is only grabbing a coffee or de-icing on the driveway during the winter.
6. Allowing a parked car to build up dirt could leave its registered owner open to prosecution, as having an unreadable number plate is illegal.
7. Checking in the mirrors is a must when exiting a parked car; it is the responsibility of the driver and any passengers to ensure their opening door will not, for example, knock a passing cyclist.
8. Using the horn while a car is stationary – including whilst parked – is against the law.
9. Parking in a cycle lane, or on zig-zags at zebra crossings or outside of a school, isn’t allowed.
10. Parking to load or unload on double yellow lines is only permitted if the load is of sufficient volume, weight or difficulty – collecting a newspaper from a shop doesn’t count.
11. The Highway Code says that you can’t park anywhere that may restrict access for emergency services, such as leaving a residential road too narrow for a fire engine.
12. Parking over a white line indicating the edge of the carriageway, where there is no pavement, is unacceptable.
13. Cars parked on a road where speed limit is more that 30mph, any road within 10m of the nearest junction, facing away from the traffic or outside of a designated parking area, should technically have their sidelights on overnight.
Gareth Roberts, head of Strategic Development at LeaseCar.uk, said: “Parking a vehicle without breaking an obscure law is much harder than the average driver might imagine. There are many minor laws that are never highlighted, yet could leave drivers in financial or legal difficulty. It’s easy to follow signs in a permit-holders area or on private land, but some Brits might only know they have broken other parking rules when it is too late.
“Most drivers already spend a huge amount on vehicle fuel, taxes and upkeep, so the last thing anyone needs is a pesky yellow fine appearing on the windscreen while they’re parked.”