Don’t wait until the first frost to check that your car is ready to tackle tough winter conditions. It is important to ensure that all vehicle components are running as smoothly as possible before the cold weather hits.
When the ground becomes icy you are susceptible to sliding and you will become dependent upon your tyres in these unpredictable situations. You should check the tread depth of your tyres every month to ensure that you have sufficient grip to handle winter conditions. The legal minimum for tyre tread is 1.6mm, but remember; the lower your tread depth, the poorer your grip, so if you have any concerns that your tyres will be unable to cope you should have them checked by a tyre specialist. You can buy new tyres online from Dexel here.
Batteries require very little maintenance but you should still check it every now and again and give it a helping hand during those colder months. A lot of winter breakdowns are due to battery failure, so it is worth getting it checked – especially if it is over three years old. Visit your local Dexel for a free battery check if you are unsure whether or not yours will be able to cope this winter.
To help your battery keep going this winter, keep an eye on your use of electronic components. Aim to only use the essentials whilst driving in cold conditions and be sure to switch off all electronics when you exit your vehicle. Electronic components are a drain on car batteries so do bear this in mind during winter journeys.
Frequently check your engine oil, screen wash and anti-freeze levels to ensure that they are at sufficient levels and top up if necessary, especially your anti-freeze, as without this your engine block is at risk of cracking – potentially resulting in an expensive repair bill. Anti-freeze is considerably affordable, but make sure you use the right concentration for your engine and avoid mixing two different types. This information will usually be in the vehicle handbook.
This is a daily task when winter hits as snow, water and condensation all have a detrimental effect on visibility. Clear any impairments to your vision before undertaking any journey using air conditioning to de-mist and windscreen wipers to remove water. You should scrape all snow and ice from your front and rear windscreen, windows and wing mirror before setting off. Don’t forget that snow on the roof of your car could fall down during your journey and may block your vision.
Don’t forget that slippery surfaces can increase stopping distances by up to ten metres! Be aware of this fact and maintain a good gap from the car in front at all times, especially when moving uphill. If your vision becomes impaired whilst driving, try to stop and pull over before continuing your journey as this could lead to accidents.