So it’s November and it hasn’t quite hit us yet but it will soon. Winter will be with us and with the cold nights, it’s important to get your car ready. You know the scene, it’s a frosty morning and your car is perfect, it starts the first time. However, your neighbours have the bonnet up, there is a battery charger connected or an AA van is waiting. This is because they failed to get their car winter ready.
We at Childwall Fiveways Auto Centre have devised a little list for you to follow. This will help you put your car up there with the best during the cold months. You could also benefit from a FREE WINTER CHECK with us to be extra safe.
We hear this all the time. Many people believe that because their car is new or has been serviced, that it’s ready for winter. You couldn’t be more wrong as we see a lot of cars younger than 5 years old in with us during these months. Your vehicle is a complex piece of equipment there are many items that need a quick check. We even have items in our cars that need changing during extreme temperatures.
1. Change Your Engine Oil: Now you may think you already have your car serviced. However, your engine oil is damaged by extreme temperatures. This is why you maintain your vehicle, there is a lifespan that oil has. Manufacturers recommend changing the oil during periods of extreme cold to give maximum lubrication to vital engine components. You don’t want water to end up in the oil, this is how your engine freezes and becomes seized.
2. Get Your Battery Checked and Changed if Required: One of the most common problems during the cold is your car battery. We see plenty of people jump-starting their engine because the weather has taken its toll. It takes a little bit more power to start your car in the cold than it does in the warm. Most car garages (including ourselves) have tools to check your battery. If it shows signs of weakness then it’s time to get that bad boy changed so it doesn’t let you down.
3. Check Your Tyres: Now it’s not necessary to have winter tyres in the UK. At least south of the Scotland border anyway. We just don’t get the amount of snow required to make the most of these or chains. However, making sure your tyres are in good order will ensure that your car stays on the road when it hits a patch of black ice.
4. Adjust Your Anti-Freeze: The anti-freeze is additive that’s added to water and keeps your engine running cool. It’s added to stop the water from freezing so in the winter months you need to increase the amount added. Your antifreeze bottle should tell you the rough mixture to make in order to protect your vehicle. Again a reputable garage also has tools to test this very quickly. They will dip your water and within seconds you know if you’re winter ready.
5. Adjust Your Washer Fluid: As with your anti-freeze, your washer fluid also needs to change its strength. Adding more ensures that it doesn’t freeze. You can then also use it to keep your windscreen clear from ice during the day.
6. Check Your Brakes: We know your brakes are essential. That is if you want your car to actually stop when you ask it to. Get them checked and make sure you can stop when there is ice around.
7. Essentials for Your Boot: This is our last tip here, however, your boot is a vital tool. As well as checking for a spare tyre, we recommend having some of the following items with you. Blanket, water, some essential tools, extra fuel and some car mats. Car mats may sound strange to carry around, however, they can provide grip when you’re stuck in the snow. Popping them under your wheel can allow you to escape a situation where your car is stuck.
Having your car ready for winter can really save your life. If you’re unsure how to check any of the items above then just contact us. We will get you booked in for a winter check and advise anything you may need during the coldest months of the year.
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