Whilst it’s not nice to think it (or indeed say it out loud) summer has well and truly gone!
The warm sunny wake-ups and late sunsets have been replaced with dark mornings and chilly daytime temperatures. Yep, the autumn is here reminding us all the value of central heating and warm clothes!
With the shift in the seasons, your car will also be feeling the effects of the autumnal weather so now is the time to ensure that you’re vehicle is prepared for the coming weather.
“My car is in good working order, why do I need to prepare for autumn and winter?”
We’re glad you asked! The simple answer is that the seasonal change brings about a change in conditions.
Whilst in the summer you enjoyed dry roads (most of the time) come the autumn, you’re going to experience a lot more wet weather; which in turn means reduced braking efficiency and less grip on the road.
Darker mornings and nights also contributes to reduced visibility as you’ll be relying on your lights more to navigate.
Lastly, the drop in temperature means things are more at risk of freezing over and failing with the cold.
“Okay so how do I prepare my car for winter?”
Fear not! The knowledgable folk at Auto-Technik have put their collective brains together to deliver their top tips on how you can ready your vehicle for the colder weather.
Keep your vehicle well hydrated and lubricated, water and oil levels matter!
Keeping your oil and water levels topped up all year round is important, but come the colder weather this is going to become more important.
Cold engines have a hard time getting started as it is! So ensuring that your engine has enough oil to lubricate it is going to be key in helping reduce wear and tear.
Your water levels are also going to need checking regularly as the colder autumn and winter temperatures mean that your heater is going to be used much more frequently.
Ill maintained water levels mean that your heater is not going to work as effectively as is should, resulting in a chillier and more than likely grumpier you!
Mind the cracks! Watch out for damage to your windscreen
If you notice a chip in your windscreen, don’t just ignore it!
Colder temperatures can cause cracks in the glass to expand due to water getting trapped and feezing or the sudden change in interior temperature once your heater is used. This can lead to a costly replacement if not dealt with sharpish.
The same goes for your bodywork. Chips in the paintwork can allow salt and other corrosive elements direct contact with the exposed metal of your bodywork, which can weaken the metal and cause rust to form.
Before the problem escalates, make sure you book your car in and get it seen to.
Keep a grip on things, maintain or replace your tyres
Your tyres go through a lot all year round but their workload increases tenfold during autumn and winter.
The weather gets substantially wetter and there’s always the risk of ice! As a result, your traction on the road surface can become greatly reduced (even if you’re tyres are brand new).
This reduction in grip is only going to be exacerbated if the tread has seen better days, so checking your tyres for wear and tear before the weather worsens is vital.
Seriously… saving money on replacing old tyres isn’t worth the risk to your’s (and others) safety!
Take the time to recharge, check your car’s battery
Checking your car’s battery can often be one of the things that get overlooked but from autumn and all the way throughout the winter you’re going to be putting it through the mill.
Increased heating and not to mention the use of lighting means more strain on your battery so getting it tested with a volt test before the changes in weather take hold is highly recommended.
Don’t send your engine to the cooler! Ensure your top up your antifreeze
Make sure your antifreeze levels are topped up to stop things from icing over. A frozen engine cooling system can cause serious damage and costly repairs.
We’d recommend bringing your car in for a check-up to make sure things are ship-shape and there are no unseen issues.
Don’t be dim! Maintain and clean your lights
Autumn and winter are notoriously grey and miserable.
This poorer light quality means that you’re going to be relying more and more on your lights, and then there are the shorter day lengths which consequently means more driving in the dark.
Making sure your headlights (don’t neglect your brake lights either) are in proper working order is going to be important.
Don’t forget that even the brightest halogen bulbs won’t count for squat if the outer casings of headlights are coated in grime! So make sure you clean them regularly.
Get kitted out in case of an emergency
We know you probably don’t want to envision the worst-case scenario, but it doesn’t hurt to prepare for it.
Make sure you get your emergency essentials together and store them in your back seat or boot…Just in case!
Essentials can include, but are not limited to:
- Spare warm clothes
- Jumper leads
- Hi-vis clothing
- Phone charger
- De-icer spray & scraper
- First aid kit
Get checked out, bring your vehicle in for a service
Having your vehicle checked over by one of our qualified, professional technicians is a sure-fire way to ensure it is in perfect working order.