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Preparing your vehicle for winter driving.
Keeping your vehicle well maintained is important, particularly in cold and wet conditions. This winter we will be writing tips on how to prepare yourself, and your vehicle, during the cold winter months.
This first post contains tips on preparing your vehicle for the coming months:
The following maintenance checks will help ensure your vehicle is winter ready. (Before carrying out these checks it is important, for your personal safety, that you are on a flat/level surface, the engine has cooled down and you are not on a main or busy road.):
1. Check your vehicle battery– If your vehicle has not been used for a while, the battery may need charging before you drive. Always check your battery before setting out and charge when necessary.
It is a good idea to purchase car battery chargers, to store in your car, in case of an emergency.
2. Refill the coolant– You should always make sure that you refill the coolant between the minimum and maximum markers. It is important that there is sufficient anti-freeze in the coolant also. Anti-freeze does not cost much but without it, your engine could overheat and crack- which is costly to fix.
Watch this ‘Know How’ video by the RAC about how to check and top up coolant levels:
3. Tyres – Having adequate tyres is extremely important, particularly during the winter months. If the road is wet or icy it is important that there is a good tread on your tyres to ensure you are able to break quickly without skidding. It is also important that the pressure of the tyres is good, and you should check this regularly. Those who live in areas that are at risk of lots of snow should consider purchasing winter tyres or ‘snow socks’; these give you better traction and control.
4. Buy a decent screen wash– It is important that you purchase a decent screen wash for the winter months and that it is able to protect your vehicle in cold conditions (the best protection in conditions of -10°C and colder). Without a decent screen wash, you risk freezing your washer pump, which could lead to the fuse blowing and your windscreen wipers not working. One screen wash that is highly recommended is the ‘Comma Xtreme’.
5. Check and replace wiper blades (when necessary) – Check your wiper blades for damage and replace if/when necessary. If your wiper blades freeze and stick to your windscreen they can get damaged when you free them, so ensure you are careful.
These simple checks are a step towards keeping you safer on the road this winter.