With a glimpse of normality returning in the distance, the time to prepare your vehicle for life after lockdown is fast approaching. For the last year, many of us have kept our vehicles parked up and dormant. Combining this with the cold winter months we have endured, we could be in for a shock, finding that our cars no longer operate as they did during early 2020. Prevent the panic from setting in last minute and take the time to assess your car now. Follow our simple tips to ensure you have a roadworthy vehicle ready for the return of normality.
Check the battery
There are many reasons as to why you could find a failing battery, including lack of use. Vehicles require around thirty minutes of driving time to charge the battery, but it is likely that your car hasn’t experienced this for the last year, and so time has driven it to become flat. To spark the battery back to life, you have two options. You can use our previous guide to jump-starting, or, if you are close enough to your home, connect your battery to a charger which utilises power from the mains.
Check your windscreen
Your front and rear wipers will require an examine. Over time, it’s possible that they may have gathered debris and, whilst operating, could cause scratches or smears to appear on the glass, restricting your view whilst driving. Give them a wipe with a damp cloth and if the issue persists, you may need to have new wiper blades installed. You should also examine for chips or cracks in your windscreen. These may seem minor at the time but, if left untreated, could result in high-risk consequences.
Check the tyres
As well as being unused for an extended period of time, temperature changes from season to season can often cause a loss of pressure within our tyres. It is important that you check that each tyre is inflated correctly before driving. You should also assess each one – including your spare if applicable – for signs of cuts, tears or pierces. The final check is for the tread measurements. The law states that each tyre must have a tread of 1.6mm. Use a 20p coin to measure this. If you can see the outer band of the 20p, your tyre tread is too shallow and unsuitable for driving.
Check the fluids
The fluids play a crucial part to the smooth and safe operation of your vehicle. They will require a simple assessment before driving. This includes your oil and coolant. Your oil levels can be assessed by use of the dipstick. Whilst your engine is off and cool, remove the dipstick, wipe down with a cloth, insert it and remove it once more to assess the levels. It should mark comfortably between the minimum and maximum points. Your coolant can be located in a plastic container and will clearly state if there is enough liquid by use of a level indicator.
At Double Dee Autos, we are on hand to provide your vehicle with the specialist servicing and repair work it may require after a year of remaining dormant. Speak with a member of our team for any expert advice or to book your vehicle in with us. Call 020 8460 3040 or email [email protected] and we will be happy to assist you.