When the temperature starts to plummet, many people experience problems with their cars. Whether it’s a flat battery or a breakdown on the road, there’s a few steps you can take to avoid these nasty inconveniences. Getting your car winter ready doesn’t take much time, but could save you lots of time and money by avoiding seasonal misfortunes. Take a look at our winter car prep guide:
Get Your Battery Checked
If your battery is close to the end of its life, the cold weather could become the nail in the coffin. When you’re making more use of the lights, heaters and windscreen wipers, the battery is under a lot more strain. This is in addition to the battery having reduced charging abilities in colder conditions.
Check Your Tyres
Icy conditions mean that the road has less grip, so you’ll need to ensure that your tyres have the correct treat depth and are in good condition. If you live in an area that gets particularly cold and icy, consider changing to winter tyres for the colder months.
Check Your Wipers
If your windscreen wipers aren’t clearing the screen effectively, you need to replace them. You’re much more likely to encounter rain, snow and dirt on your windscreen in winter. If you can’t clear the screen while you’re driving, you’re at risk of an accident. The Highway Code states that your windscreen must be clear of obstruction.
Top Up Your Wiper Fluid
When the roads are gritted in icy conditions, the grit sprays up onto your windscreen. This causes your front window to look cloudy. A spray from your windscreen wipers will easily resolve this, but if you’re out of wiper fluid then things could become dangerous. Driving with impaired vision is a serious offence, so don’t get caught out with something as simple as running out of wiper fluid.
Check Your Lights
Before the winter months rolled in, you may not have needed to drive in the dark. Check that your lights are clean, clear and functioning correctly. Something as small as a broken reversing light could spell a lot of trouble. If you’re driving without adequate lighting, you’re not driving responsibly. You’ll be putting yourself and other road users at risk if any of your car’s lights aren’t working properly.
Top Up Your Engine Coolant
Make sure there’s enough antifreeze in your engine coolant. If you’ve spent the whole year topping it up with water, you could end up with an expensive repair bill. Your coolant needs to be about half antifreeze to prevent your engine from freezing.
Top Up Your Fuel
It doesn’t matter if you’re taking a long journey or a short journey, you should always make sure you have plenty of fuel. In winter, you’re more likely to experience congestion and delays due to poor road conditions. If you’re nearing the end of your tank and get stuck in traffic, you could end up breaking down or damaging your fuel pump.
If your car breaks down on the side of the road in winter, you’ll be grateful to have packed a few essentials. Blankets will help to keep you warm, a torch will help if it’s dark and a few non-perishable food items can give you morale while you wait for assistance. It’s also recommended that you have a hazard warning triangle, so you can warn other road users that your vehicle isn’t working.
Call Volkswagen & Audi Centre To Carry Out Essential Vehicle Checks This Winter
Many of the things on this list can be performed at home, but some will need to be done by a professional. Don’t take risks with your windscreen wipers, battery or engine. Call us today to book your car in for a check-up. We’ll make sure everything is working as it should be to keep you safe this winter.