As the sun is lower in the sky and the temperatures start to drop, Autumn is when you may well face blinding, dazzling sun one day and the first frozen windscreen on another so it’s important not to get caught out by the changes in driving conditions.
Make sure it’s clean inside and out to maximise your vision – Autumn is especially bad for dazzle from low sun, especially during rush hour. Deal with any windscreen chips and scratches before frosty conditions start.
At best your blades will last for two years – when were yours last replaced? New blades clean the windscreen more effectively so help to reduce potential glare and blurry areas. This is a good time to replace your blades.
Top it up (and keep a spare bottle in the boot) and use a good quality additive to protect from frost or freezing overnight temperatures.
Have you got one? Where is it? Usually buried somewhere in the boot or garage which will be a nuisance when you first need to use it. Check its condition and keep it handy from now on. Make sure all your windows are clear of frost / condensation before driving.
One of the most common causes of breakdowns, especially in Winter. If there’s any sign it’s struggling now, get it checked out – you don’t want it to let you down mid journey and it makes sense to renew it if it’s getting old – it’s cheaper (and less disruptive to your life) than a battery failure.
Check that all your lights are working properly and no bulbs need replacing (including brake lights and number plate light). You can change bulbs yourself (refer to your handbook) although some do require a visit to your garage. Consider carrying some spare bulbs just in case.
Check for general condition, pressure and tread – you ought to have at least 3mm of tread to get you through the Winter – if you haven’t, think about new tyres sooner rather than later. Winter tyres are becoming more popular as they offer better grip when the temperature is below 7 degrees. You must fit winter tyres to all 4 wheels it is not safe to fit them to only 2 wheels.
Antifreeze isn’t just for Winter – the additives prevents corrosion and improves Summer cooling as well so it should be checked as part of your regular vehicle service. You definitely don’t want to experience a frozen engine – it’s expensive to repair and damages your radiator and pipework as well as the engine. If in any doubt about the correct antifreeze to use (there are different types and some don’t mix) – get your garage to check it / top it up for you.
It is sensible to carry a Hi-Vis vest and a torch at all times as it will likely be dark just when you have a problem.
If you need any help or aren’t sure, call us on 01952 585511. We are here to help with all your motoring needs.
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