Going from summer to winter: your essential car maintenance tips

We may not be thinking about snow and ice just yet, but we are definitely moving into autumn, which means wind, rain, stormy weather, and fog. And before you know it, those wintry conditions will be upon us and if you haven’t prepared your car you’ll be wishing you had when you’re standing in the biting cold waiting for a tow. Make this year different by being prepared early and instead of waiting in the cold you could be indoors at your destination with a hot cuppa.

Top things to check now

Our list of the top five things to check now, before you do anything else, is:

  1. Servicing. You should be getting your car serviced every year and if you haven’t done it yet, then change that cycle by getting it done now. This way you will be doing it annually at the end of the summer, ready for winter and everything it can throw at you.
  2. Battery. Car batteries have an average life of three to four years. Keep on top of how it’s doing by checking its charge every few months, making sure you give the car a good run to fully recharge it – especially if you make a lot of frequent, short journeys – and replace it if it is near the end of its life or isn’t keeping its charge for long. During the winter the battery takes on a lot more strain as you are using your headlights and wipers more and have the heating on for longer.
  3. Tyres. While the minimum legal tread is 1.6mm, consider having a tread depth of 3mm during the winter months. It isn’t just snow and ice that can be dangerous, surface water can be lethal too if your tyres are not in good condition. Your tyres are instrumental in steering and braking safely so you want to be sure they are as good as can be.
  4. Antifreeze. Protect your engine by getting the right mix of water and antifreeze and get your coolant levels topped up sooner rather than later. Aim for a 50/50 mix of antifreeze and water and make sure to keep that balance every time you top up. Adding only water over the winter will dilute your antifreeze too much, potentially ending up with a large engine repair bill when things go wrong.
  5. Lights and wipers. You will be using those a lot more over the winter months, so check them now and replace as necessary. All lights, including fog lights and indicators, should work well and be cleaned so that they are visible. Check your wipers for any potential cracking or tears and replace them if you find any. Clean the inside of your windshield to avoid fogging up, top up your screenwash with antifreeze, and make sure there are no chips in your windscreen.

For a full check-up before winter or for a service, repair, or maintenance check talk to us at Double Dee Autos today. Just give us a call on 020 8460 3040 and one of our specialists will sort it all out for you in no time.