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Ice, snow, flooding, fog and gales that the winter brings in all create a tougher environment not only for us, but for our cars too.

Your car may need some more attention during the colder months but the good news is that you can carry out most basic car maintenance checks yourself, saving you time and money.

Check out our four-point action plan to help avoid a breakdown and stay safe on the road this winter.

  • Tyres

Worn tyres are a safety hazard at any time of the year, but in winter the accident risk is even greater. Make sure to check all four tyres for damage and tread depth regularly and keep them pumped up to the correct pressure. Legally, the tread depth must be at least 1.6mm all the way around the tyre. Luckily, you can check this using a 20p piece, check out our tyre guide for more information.

Stopping distances will be at least double in wet weather, as your tyres will have less grip on the road. Reduce your speed and leave more space between you and the vehicle in front to account for greater stopping distances.

  • Battery

Flat batteries are one of the biggest cause of breakdowns during the winter. Not only is this a massive inconvenience on a frosty morning, but it can also be a huge cost to replace your battery if needed.

Make sure to switch everything off as you leave the car. When removing your key, it may not switch off the lights. Some modern cars may have a ‘lights on’ warning sound as you open your car door which will remind you.

One of the most basic things you can do is to try to take a longer journey every so often to charge up your battery.

  • Brakes

 It’s essential that your brakes are in full working order during the winter because roads are wetter and more slippery than at any other time of the year.

If you can hear squealing, your braking feels strange or your car pulls to one side you need to get them checked by a professional. It can be hard enough to control a car in winter conditions. Don’t let the poor conditions of your breaks raise the difficulty even further.

  • Lights

All your cars exterior lights must be operational – that’s everything from the headlights to indicators, and even the number plate bulb.

Check them regularly and if you can’t test them all yourself, ask a friend or family member to help check them. It’s worth cleaning your lenses regularly so that other road users can see you properly.

It is also important to make sure your insurance is up to date and your car is insured, get your car insurance quote here.

 

 

Disclaimer- Articles are for general information only – customers should always seek their own independent advice. GoSkippy is not affiliated with the organisations/businesses mentioned and does not recommend or endorse any of the included products or services. For more information please visit our disclaimer.

 

 

 

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GoSkippy Insurance is arranged and administered by Somerset Bridge Insurance Services Limited who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Firm Reference Number 477112). Registered in England and Wales (No. 6334001). Registered office: Lysander House, Catbrain Lane, Cribbs Causeway, Bristol, BS10 7TQ.

 

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