If you drive, you must know how difficult it gets to handle a sudden car breakdown – especially when you have to reach somewhere on time. You might not realise it but tyre maintenance can play a fundamental role in keeping your vehicle safe and sound. Winters can be challenging when you are commuting by road because roads are wet and slippery and your vehicle can lose its control if your tyres are not right.
With the right tyres you can always be confident on the road and your vehicle will perform better on the road in terms of fuel efficiency. Follow simple tips and tricks below for maintaining your tyres:
· Good tyres will save you money in the long-run
If your tyres are fitted professionally and you have selected them based on your customized driving needs, then they will help you reduce any repairing costs and you will end up saving money in the long run. For this you should have well-maintained tyres so that you can utilize your vehicle properly.
· Buy winter tyres from the right place
Winter tyres are speciality tyres – designed specifically for wet roads. They have a specific type of surface which makes sure that your tyres have good grip on the road. Being in London and driving to local places can be really difficult when your car tyres are not a good match. In order to fix
Make sure your tyres are up to scratch
As the only parts of your car that come into contact with the road surface, your tyres are an essential safety system. It’s more important than ever that they’re in good condition in the winter when the highways are often wet or icy. One of the first things to check is the depth of your tyre tread. The legal minimum is 1.6mm, but safety experts recommend having at least 3mm of tread. Tests conducted by engineering and development consultancy MIRA found that in wet conditions, the braking distance of tyres with 1.6mm of tread can be 44 per cent greater than tyres with 3mm of tread.
Make sure your tyre pressures are correct too. Under or overinflated tyres can reduce handling capability and increase the risk of blowouts, which can be particularly dangerous in poor weather. It’s also wise to take a look at the general condition of your tyres. Check them for any bulges, splits or scuffs. If you see signs of damage, arrange to get them assessed by an expert. They may need to be repaired or replaced with new tyres.
Check your engine coolant
The engine coolant in your car needs to have the right proportions of water and antifreeze. If you have topped up water levels in the past without also topping up antifreeze, there may be a risk that the fluid will freeze during very cold spells. In turn, this could result in your engine overheating – and mean you’re left with a big repair bill. So, it pays to check your coolant levels. Make sure you do this when your engine is cold and look in your handbook to see the correct coolant and mix to use if you need to top it up.
Give your windscreen wipers a once-over
Your windscreen wipers may be working overtime throughout the winter, so it’s important that they’re in good condition. Check them for any tears or nicks by simply running your fingers along the blades. If you notice signs of damage, get them replaced.
Keep an eye on your screen wash levels too, and when you’re topping them up, make sure you use a pre-mix or an additive that is effective down to temperatures of at least -15°C. This will help ensure your screen wash doesn’t freeze in low temperatures.
Take a look at your lights
With the long nights, risk of freezing fog and generally poor road conditions, it’s vital that your lights are working properly over the winter months. So, take the time to check that each bulb is functioning properly, and get into the habit of regularly cleaning your lights to ensure they’re free of grime and snow. It’s surprising how quickly they can get dirty when you’re travelling on winter roads.
Check the battery
It’s well known that cold weather can have an adverse effect on car batteries. In fact, the RAC deals with more than 400,000 battery-related faults each winter. This is because of a combination of low temperatures (which reduce battery output) and the increased use of car lights, blowers and heaters (which put batteries under added strain).
If you struggle to start your car or it sounds like it’s labouring when you turn the key, it’s time to get the battery checked out. These pieces of kit tend to have an effective life of around five years and as they age, they start to become less reliable.
Carry a breakdown kit just in case- and drive with care!
Even if you follow the advice above, there is always a risk that you will experience a breakdown. In case this happens, it pays to have an emergency kit with you in your car containing useful items such as a shovel, hi-vis vest, blanket, torch, ice scraper and de-icer, food and drink and a charged mobile phone. It’s also worth having a pair of waterproof boots or wellies with you in case you need to walk for help in wet or snowy conditions.
More generally, make sure you drive according to the weather and road conditions. For example, check the weather forecast and travel news before you set off on journeys and find the safest route to get to your destination. Where possible, stick to main roads that are well lit and regularly gritted. Also, give yourself extra time to get where you need to go so that you don’t have to rush. Another safety tip is to always make sure your windows are clear of any snow or ice before you set off on a journey.
Looking after your car and staying safe on the roads is always harder in winter when driving conditions are worse. However, as long as you’re sensible and bear tips like these in mind, you can minimise the risk of experiencing difficulties when temperatures drop.
this you should always consider buying your winter tyres from tyre providers who have a good word of mouth. Book winter tyres from here at DAT Tyres
· Never continue to use worn out tyres
Worn out tyres are not in a good condition and therefore you should never continue to use them. Best advice is to find a new tyre replacement before your tyres cause you trouble.