Just as we get to grips with one set of lockdown rules, or one tier, it feels as though the rules have changed again. And, often, those changes can feel like a huge game of “spot the difference”.
The first lockdown saw strict measures enforced which left garages open for emergencies, but which instigated an extension on MOT test certificates to help ease the pressure. Once again, during lockdown v3, garages have been allowed to stay open alongside other essential services, so no further extensions on MOTs will be necessary at this time.
Essential vehicle-related services
The list of essential businesses extends beyond garages and MOT testing centres. The government further elaborates to include: petrol stations, automatic (not manual) car washes, tyre specialists, vehicle repair garages and MOT services, taxis and vehicle hire businesses. However, it won’t be business as usual for car dealerships, who must close their showrooms for the duration of the lockdown. While it is possible to buy a vehicle online and collect in person, test drives and in-person sales are not permitted at this time.
With travel restricted for all but essential journeys, there will be fewer vehicles on the road and, inevitably, reduced demand on all vehicle related businesses including petrol stations, service centres, garages, taxi and vehicle hire services. However, if you do need to leave home for any of the above purposes, ensure that you follow current guidance and limit face to face contact as much as possible.
Prevent contact with car care
While it is fantastic to know that our local garages are keeping the country going, the best way to keep everyone safe is to limit the need for contact as much as possible. Simple car maintenance, particularly if your vehicle is being used less than normal, can make a big difference and could prevent you needing to seek a mechanic’s services:
- Battery – if you are not using your vehicle often, run the engine for 10 minutes once a week or so (it’s a good idea to escape the house and sit in the car with a book!).
- Tyres – with the fluctuating temperatures, you’re not the only one that is likely to be a little flat. Check your tyre pressure before making a journey to prevent a blow-out.
- Fuel – empty tanks and freezing temperatures aren’t a great combination. Reduce the need to go to the petrol station and the risk of getting water in your fuel tank by filling up – even if you usually only get half a tank.
At Trust A Garage, we very much look forward to the world getting back to “normal”. In the meantime, we would like to thank our customers and, most especially, our trusted local garages, for their patience and perseverance over the last year. To join our incredible community of local mechanics and satisfied customers, follow Trust A Garage on Facebook or Twitter.