Driving at this time of year when the temperature drops can be very daunting! Increased winds, rain, snow and other unpleasant weather can affect the way your car behaves and make the roads hugely hazardous. On top of which, having less daylight heightens the difficulty drivers face on the roads.
On approaching the coldest nights of the year, it’s important that drivers ensure that their vehicles are road safe before they head off, to minimise the risk of damaging their vehicles or endangering their lives.
Your car’s windscreen washer fluid contains anti-freeze that stops the water from freezing when the temperature drops. Make sure your fluid is topped up before your journey – running out on your journey not only proves hazardous but according to the Road Vehicles Regulations 1986 it is illegal to not have fluid in your car’s screen washer bottle.
Having incorrect tyre pressure will not only cost you money as it reduces your car’s fuel efficiency, but it can also be dangerous especially if you’re travelling long distance. Be sure that each tyre meets the legal tread depth guidelines of 1.6mm.
Make sure your wiper blades are fully functional and can deal with the grit, snow and ice that is likely to occur during the winter months. Blades should be changed every 12 months, as the rubber can perish if exposed to extreme temperatures. And remember that when defrosting your windscreen before travelling, don’t leave the engine to idle as it could land you a £20 fine.
Your car battery can also become less efficient during the winter season. If it cuts out but doesn’t run flat, you can jump start it and then drive for at least 20 minutes to recharge it.
You should also never pour boiling water on the windscreen as it could cause it to crack, and ensure that you completely clear the car’s windows of ice before driving off or you could risk a £60 fine.
Safe driving from Britannia!