Throughout the summer your car experiences a lot of use, with constant cleaning and plenty of road trips. Once the cold weather sets in, you find that your car is in some desperate need of TLC. Not only are the chilly temperatures impossible to wash your car in, but the icy roads make it difficult to go very far in one go. With this in mind, here are a few useful tips to help you care for your car this winter.
Check Your Tyres
Making sure your tyres are fully pumped and safe is essential throughout winter. With such bad weather conditions, you need to know that your tyres are in their best condition and ready to tackle any kind of condition the road may have. Whether that’s wet, icy or deep snow, you need confidence in your car and having fully inflated tyres will help with this. You also need to check and make sure that you have good tread on your tyres, which should be a minimum depth of 3mm, to ensure that they’re ready for the winter weather.
Essential Top Ups
After lots of heavy use through the autumn time, you may find that your car is running low on certain things. Start by checking that you have enough oil, as this is essential to ensure your car runs efficiently. Check the level of your oil to see how much you currently have, and if needed, fill it to the top to prevent you from running out at an awkward moment. You also need to check that you have plenty of washer fluid. This is something that catches lots of people out throughout the winter, as you find yourself low on washer fluid when the heavy rain kicks in or the salt from the grit has settled and left a thick layer on your windscreen. If you feel like you’re going through a lot of washer fluid, the best thing to do is to keep a bottle of diluted washer fluid in the boot of your car to have on hand just in case.
Clean the Exterior
Whilst the winter may cause your car to get dirty very often, it’s really important to keep your car as clean as possible to prevent any damage. If you let the mud dry on your paintwork then you may find further down the line that it’s caused scratching and rusting, which is not what you want to happen. Give your car a quick clean every few weeks to remove any excess dirt or mud that has clung to the body in the wet weather. This will also make your car look much cleaner and make it easier to keep on top of.
Cover and Protect It
Dependant on the style and type of car that you have, you may find that keeping it neatly stored under a tarpaulin will help to keep the weather from doing any damage. For those who have collectable cars, or who’s cars are their prized possession, this is the perfect way to keep it in tip top condition. If your car lives on your driveway and you want to keep the ice and snow from settling on the bodywork, then cover with a tarpaulin to keep it hidden from the bad weather. This will also help when the winds are strong and lots of debris is blown around the area.
Keep it Going
If you leave your car sat on the driveway for the winter, you’ll more than likely have a dead vehicle by the time spring arrives. Leaving cars to sit in cold conditions is a recipe for trouble, especially if you’re not using the car at all. You need to keep a car moving to ensure its battery doesn’t die, as well as to keep the engine running smoothly too. Try to use your car at least once a week if you’re not using it daily to prevent any issues in the near future.
Written by Emma Blaylock