When it comes to driving throughout the year, there is no period as treacherous as the winter months. Over this time you’ll have to deal with extreme wind, rain, snow and even ice on the roads. As such, it’s important to ensure keeping your car in tip-top shape, maintaining high efficiency levels.
There are many aspects of your car to take into account over the winter months and some of the repairs you may need to make include worn tyres, blown light bulbs, low oil levels and even cracked windscreens. As such, make sure to take a look at the below in order to ensure your car is in the best possible condition.
During the winter the tyres become even more important than usual, needing extra grip to keep your vehicle safely on the roads. Tread is what’s important here and legally your tyres must have 1.6mm tread levels. During the winter months though, it’s heavily advised by the AA to maintain a tread level of at least 3mm. Other things to look out for include visible tyre damage such as bulges and splits. Also ensure the tyre pressure meets the recommended level. This can be found in the manufacturer’s handbook
As you would expect, antifreeze is much more important over the cold, winter months than it would be in the summer. Simply put, it prevents your coolant freezing, which can have detrimental effects on your car’s engine. Freezing coolant is highly likely to cause a breakdown.
Your car’s battery gets a lot of use throughout the year, but when winter hits, there’s an even greater burden placed on it. Your battery will be used for heating the windscreen and air con, ensuring lights work and running your radio. As such, it’s over the winter that batteries are more likely to fail. The RAC suggest to have your battery tested if it is over three-years-old, whilst ensuring your car isn’t left unused for long periods. This is likely over the colder months, especially if you have a summer vehicle such as the BMW 4 Series or MX-5 convertible.
Ensuring your windscreen is in an excellent condition all year round is vital, but in winter be particularly aware of maintenance. Before any journey, be sure all snow and ice is cleared from the windscreen (de-icer and a scraper will come in handy here). Also be on the lookout for cracks that could worsen over time. If you notice anything different, get expert help as soon as possible.