Getting your car ready for Autumn

Autumn RoadAs the nights draw-in and the mercury falls; it’s time to wrap-up warm and get ready for winter. Autumn driving can take a toll on your vehicle and it’s a good idea to give it a little TLC before the hard months ahead.

Get a Grip Autumn rains and plunging temperatures provide a meteorological reminder to check the condition of your tyres. Motorists are legally obliged to make sure their tread is a minimum of 1.6mm deep, although it makes sense to change tyres sooner to ensure maximum traction on slippery roads. Tyre pressure can also have a serious impact on road handling and you’ll need to make sure they are inflated to the manufacturer’s recommended psi.

Clear Vision Low light levels can make driving difficult and when the sun does come out it hangs on the horizon and can dazzle drivers. Smears and smudges on your windscreen can compound problems so check your wiper blades for signs of wear and tear. Squeaking windscreen wipers are a cry for help and probably need replacing.

Light Up It goes without saying that when you’re driving in dark and wet conditions it’s essential to see and be seen. Check for blown bulbs and fuses and make sure that all your lights are working. If light levels drop during daylight hours use dipped headlights which have been proven to save lives in Scandinavian countries.

Clean Up Give your car a thorough clean and carefully check the bodywork for damage. Small problems ignored over the Winter months can add-up to big bills in Spring.

Frozen Assets Motorists should keep a close eye on their antifreeze year-round, but particularly during the colder months.

Fully Charged The majority of breakdown call-outs are for faulty or flat batteries so check that yours is in good order with plenty of life left. Batteries have a lifespan of 3-5 years before they need replacing.

Drive Carefully Autumn brings different driving challenges from wet leaves (which can be as slippery as ice) to harmless looking puddles (which can hide hazardous potholes). Motorists are advised to drive cautiously and try to avoid sudden acceleration or braking.

Plan Ahead When it’s cold and dark and wet there are inevitably more cars on the road and some drivers can get frustrated. Under adverse conditions it pays to keep calm, so allow plenty of extra time for your journey, and try to avoid travelling at peak times.

Get Covered You won’t be surprised to read that breakdown organisations are busiest when engines are working overtime. It’s hard to think of a worse way to end a journey than shivering on the hard shoulder, but with annual breakdown cover for just £59.00 (including Roadside Recovery and Home Assistance), there’s really no reason why you should be stranded. To find out more or arrange immediate cover visit Quoteline Direct.

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