I recently had a minor panic that we hadn’t checked our tyres for AGES and were about to embark on a long, cold journey with 4 children. Luckily they were ok, but it did make me vow to check them more often. This great collaborative post has some top tips to keep you safe all winter.
We all love the festive season and there’s nothing more picturesque than a frosty field on a freezing cold winter’s morning. However when temperatures drop and daylight hours decrease, it’s time to make road safety your top priority. The cold weather can affect your car in a whole host of ways so it’s essential that you take the elements on board when hitting the road this winter.
Running checks on your vehicle before any long journey is important, no matter time of year it is but it’s becomes particularly paramount when it’s dark, cold and the roads are slippery. Doing things like checking your oil and fluid levels, running checks on batteries and replacing any bulbs that might not be working will go a long way to heading off any unnecessary accidents and potentially fatal road incidents. Making sure your wind screen wipers are in tip top condition is also a great idea as visibility dips in darkness and weather conditions become much harsher.
Another thing which you need to give some extra TLC to during the cooler seasons is your tyres. Websites like www.tyreplus.co.uk are a great place to go for all of the official details and advice but I thought I’d offer my advice ahead of the festive period!
It can be really easy to forget about the four wheels that carry us from A to B all year round but we’d be pretty lost without them. Not only are damaged tyres a huge inconvenience for your plans and your bank balance, there are also a number of legal requirements that you should be adhering to. Failing to do so could leave you facing huge fine and maybe even losing your driving license. So here’s what you need to do…
I was once told about the 20p Tread Test which has made making sure my tyres have a sufficient amount of tread so much easier. All you need to do is take a regular 20p coin and slot it into the grooves on your tyre. If you can see any of the outer rim of the coin then your tyres a low on tread but if the outer rim of the coin is completely concealed then you’re good to go. The law requires you to have at least 1.6mm tread on every tyre so this is an important one to keep on top of.
Check your air pressure
As well as tread depth, it’s all crucial to make sure all of your tyres are topped up with enough air. This can be done quickly, easily and for free at most petrol stations or garages and it’s worth doing, especially as the icy weather approaches. Tyres that don’t have enough air in them have reduced grip on the road, meaning the driver has less control of their vehicle. Making sure each wheel has the level of air pressure stated in the handbook will prevent this issue and any easily avoidable road accidents.
Look out for lumps and bumps
While you’re testing your tread depth and making sure your wheels are pumped up with enough air pressure, keep an eye out for any cuts, lumps or bulges while you’re there. These are sure signs of tyre damage which will probably result in a puncture or flat tyre further down the line. Check for any foreign objects that might be lodged in the tyre surface too as these are easily picked up when driving on uneven surfaces.