In this month’s blog post we have a few checks for your car in Autumn and Winter. By going through the following information you will be taking great steps towards ensuring your safety and your vehicles full reliability during these cold, wet, windy and icy months.
Wipers and Windscreens
Strong winds, heavy rain, and ice can cause poor visibility, which in turn can lead to accidents. To minimize the risk of becoming involved in an accident during bad weather, drivers should check their windshield wipers for drag (leaving streaks or “bouncing”). If this is occurring, it is time to replace your wiper blades. We would also recommend you invest in a good de-icer and scraper as ice can form on the windscreen overnight, potentially obstructing vision.
Any chips or cracks on the windshield should be repaired immediately as one small bump on a road can turn your chip into a large crack.
Poor ventilation in your car can cause bad visibility, and if your windows are fogging up, you may be inclined to try to clear them whilst driving – something you should never do while moving, the small distraction, coupled with the loss of visibility can lead to serious accidents.
This is where your air-conditioning comes in extremely useful. By re-gassing your aircon you may help to clear up your misted windows and allowing you to focus on the road ahead.
Brakes and Brake Parts
It is vital to check your brake system, particularly when the weather is wet and cold. Check and change your brake fluid when required using the level indicator on the brake fluid reservoir. Makes sure to never drive when the fluid is at a minimum. Whilst you’re at it, you should check your brake discs too, as driving with badly worn brakes is dangerous. Feel free to change them yourself, as long as you are experienced in doing so. If not, take it to a mechanic to change them for you.
As the weather becomes gloomy and wet leaves mix on the roads, driving with tyres that are worse-for-wear can be perilous. The minimum tyre tread is currently 1.6mm, however 2mm is recommended for driving in winter. Any lower and you will need to get them changed. You should also be keen to check the sidewalls of your tyres for damage too. If you notice any gashes or considerable damage you should get them replaced.
When you do checks for your car, it’s essential that your headlights, brake lights, and indicators are definitely included, especially as the nights grow darker. A single faulty light could lead to a serious accident if other drivers can’t see you properly. Bulbs don’t have to be expensive, so a replacement bulb purchased as needed may keep you safe.
You should perform regular maintenance on your vehicle, especially during the autumn when bad weather and low light are apparent, leading to difficult driving conditions. Stay safe this autumn and winter by giving your car a total look-over, paying careful attention at the tips mentioned previously. Although it may not be nice to go out in cold, windy and wet conditions to do these checks for your car, a quick inspection of your car in uncomfortable conditions can help you drive safer this season and may even save your life.