Our Top Car Checks Before A Long Journey
For many of us a summer holiday starts with a loooooong car journey, there may be children to entertain and pets to deal with, the last thing you want is a broken down car adding stress and time to your journey.
Us girls here at Rivervale decided to show you just how easy it is to perform a few vital checks before you set off – here are our top 5 checks for your car ………
Make sure you have the right tyre pressure. You will find these values inside the driver’s door, in your car manual or if all else fails check online and all you need is your registration number. You will find you are given values depending on vehicle load. If your vehicle is full of holiday baggage you need to pick the laden tyre pressure value. Most garages and supermarkets will have an air pump available for customers.
Check the condition of your tyres, worn tyres are dangerous and will affect your grip on the road. Make sure your tread is at least 1.6 mm across the central part of the tyre to remain safe and legal. The easiest way to check is the 20p test – if you can see the rim of the 20p get it checked by a professional.
…….And don’t forget to check your spare!
Running out of oil will cause your car to be very unhappy and the fast moving parts inside will grind to a stop. Don’t rely on your dashboard warning light to let you know the oil is low it might be too late. You can easily check your oil using the dipstick and top up if necessary, only do this when the engine is cold. It’s important to use the right oil for your car, if you can’t find information on which oil to use in your car manual you can check online!
Check your coolant level. If it’s low top it up – but only when the engine is cold to help keep your engine from overheating. It’s really important to make sure you have the correct concentration of anti-freeze, as at any time of year the temperature can drop! Make a 50/50 solution of antifreeze and water – don’t forgot your gloves as antifreeze will irritate your skin!
Windscreen and wipers
Check for any chips that may obscure your view and could turn into cracks at any time. Usually chips can be repaired quickly and most insurers include windscreen cover. Don’t forget to check your wipers – over time your wiper blades will wear down creating a smear on the windscreen rather than clearing it. Wipers are all different sizes so be careful which you buy if you need to replace these – if you’re not sure which size you need don’t panic! Check online! ……And remember to fill up your screenwash!
Check all the lights – even the fog lights you just never know what the weather might throw at you! Enlisting some help for this check will make life easier for you! Replace any bulbs, if necessary. If you are not confident to do this yourself Halfords offer a bulb fitting service and you can search the right bulb for your car on their website.
Laura’s top tips for your car journey
- Remember your sunglasses to reduce the effect of glare.
- Pack a picnic blanket, water and some nibbles!
- If travelling with children or pets invest in some sun blinds to keep them cool.
- Make sure your mobile phone has a full charge before you leave.
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