As the trees start to lose their leaves and temperatures begin to fall, winter creeps ever closer. Before it gets too nippy, it is a good idea to make sure your car is ready to handle whatever Mother Nature throws at it.
With that in mind, we have put our heads together and come up with a simple list of things you should check to make sure your car is ready for winter:
If you don’t have a good idea of how old your car’s battery is or how well it is holding charge, it would be wise to check before the weather turns. As the nights draw in and you start using your lights and heaters more, this extra use during puts the battery under more strain than in warmer months.
If you are unsure of the age of the battery in your car and you don’t have the user manual to hand (let’s be honest- who does?), your local garage can perform a quick battery test to make sure it still holds charge efficiently, often at little to no cost, so you can rest assured that the engine will start up, no matter how cold it gets.
Ensuring that your car’s tyres are properly inflated and have road-legal tread depth is important before starting any journey, but during winter it becomes even more so, thanks to wet roads and low temperatures raising the risk of icy conditions.
However, even the safest tyres can skid on ice. Always remember to come off the accelerator and steer into a skid should you find your car dancing across an icy road.
One of your brake lights not working? Now is probably the perfect time to replace it. Shorter days and longer nights mean it is important to make sure your car can be seen by other motorists. Seems basic, but keep an eye out for broken headlights, brake lights and super-speedy indicators next time you are out in your car at night. It’s surprisingly common. Don’t be that driver.
Make sure your wiper blades are working properly- if they make a racket when they are on, you may want to invest in a new set. Make sure the screenwash you are using contains anti-freeze too, if not- you can pick up a few litres from any half decent petrol station or motor supplies shop.
It is also important to make sure the inside of your windscreen is clean, as this will help to reduce glare from the headlights of oncoming vehicles. A de-misting sponge is a simple, cheap way to make sure the inside of your car’s windows and windscreen are clean and streak free.
A ‘just in case’ kit
It may seem like overkill, but keeping an emergency kit in the boot of your car at all times during the colder months could really make a massive difference should the worst happen in bad weather.
Car care basics such as motor oil, screenwash and de-icer should make it into your kit, as should extra clothing, blankets, wellington boots, food, water, a torch and even a spare battery for your mobile phone. If snow and ice is scheduled, you may even want to add a small shovel to your kit…
…And some breakdown cover would be wise as well.
Remember: There is no such thing as being too prepared for cold weather.
If you are unsure how to perform these checks yourself, visit us at Fallsbrook Motors. We will happily help ensure your car is ready to battle through winter.