After a summer of driving, it is important that you make sure your vehicle is ready for winter. The UK’s weather doesn’t produce such extreme driving conditions as elsewhere in the world, but there are still some things that you need to do to make sure you stay safe. Check out our simple steps to make sure that you are winter-ready.
Top Up Your Anti-Freeze
During the warmer weather, it doesn’t matter if your coolant systems don’t have the right balance of anti-freeze, but come winter, it is important. If you don’t have enough anti-freeze, your engine could overheat. Before temperatures drop, get your coolant flushed and checked for leaks before topping up with fresh coolant.
Clear Out The Garage!
Over the summer, the garage is often used for summer-related storage: bikes, garden toys and beach games tend to take up a huge amount of space. It doesn’t matter in the summer, though, because your car is fine parked outside. However, during a cold winter, it is a good idea to store your car in a garage to prevent frost on the windscreen and frozen pipes. Clear out your garage so that you can park your vehicle in it!
Test Your Heating
The likelihood is that you won’t have checked your heater throughout the summer. Check your heater, demister and blowers before you need them; if you think there may be a problem, get your local garage to check it out before temperatures drop.
Check Your Battery
Cold weather can impact your battery because your vehicle takes more energy to start when it is cold. In addition, having the heating and demisters on put a further strain on it. If your battery is old or a connection is loose, it could easily go flat; check the condition of your battery and make sure the charging system is properly connected. If in doubt, pop into your local garage.
Check Your Tyres
In the winter, your tyre pressure may need to be a little higher. Check your handbook and don’t worry if your tyres appear “flat” when it is cold and you haven’t driven it for a few hours; the warmer air has risen to the tops of the tyres, making it look flat. This should even out once you start driving, but use caution to begin with and check with a local tyre specialist if you are concerned.
Making sure that your vehicle runs smoothly throughout the winter is fairly simple, but fixing problems caused by cooler temperatures can be stressful, inconvenient and costly. If you are in any doubt about whether your vehicle is ready for winter, contact your local mechanic and book a full service.