If you’ve ever gone out to your car before a shift to find out that it won’t start, you’ll know what an inconvenience this is. Car issues are even more likely to happen during the cold winter months, so to ensure that frozen fluids and battery problems won’t result in you having to cancel your shifts, here are some tips for making sure that your car is winter ready.
1.Get your car serviced
Having your car serviced can prevent a number of different issues from occurring, especially as the weather turns colder. You’ll also find that many garages offer winter car checks which can also help to ensure that your car is in good shape. These are sometimes discounted – or even free! – so shop around before you commit.
2.Be wary of battery issues
Your car battery not only has to work extra hard in cold temperatures, but it gets put under additional strain when you use the lights and heater more frequently too. This means that battery issues are a common problem in winter, and a flat battery means that your car simply won’t start. Car batteries typically last around 5 years, so keep this in mind when considering whether you might need a replacement, and don’t delay in getting it checked should you car struggle to start.
3.Check your tyres
Sliding around on wet and icy roads isn’t fun, and the best way to avoid this is to check that your tyres have enough tread and pressure. The legal minimum tyre tread depth in the UK is 1.6mm. However, it’s often recommended that tyres have 3mm of tread on them in order to be safe, so if yours are lower than this you might want to consider having them changed. The correct tyre pressure varies for each car, but if you know yours you can check the pressure yourself at most petrol stations. If you don’t know your car’s correct tyre pressure, you can find it in the handbook or use one of a number of online tools.
4.Don’t forget your antifreeze
Adding antifreeze to your engine coolant probably isn’t something that you think about in the summer, but during the winter it’s important to remember this crucial step. Should your engine coolant freeze, your engine may overheat which is an expensive car problem to fix! Your engine coolant should preferably be half water and half antifreeze, so don’t forget to top it up to avoid it getting too diluted over time.
5.Organise breakdown cover
If you don’t already have breakdown cover, you’ll definitely want to make sure that you organise this as the weather gets colder. Not only will this ensure that you don’t get stuck out in the rain and snow should you break down, but you can also arrange to be covered when you’re at home. This means that should you struggle to start your car before heading to a shift, someone will be able to come and help you to get on your way.
There are some great breakdown cover deals to be found through Perks at Work – so make sure you check these out when choosing a policy!
Now that you’ve read our tips on making your car winter ready, we hope that you’ll avoid pre-shift breakdown panic in the future!