Autumn-days

26.10.15

Driving Tips – Autumn

Autumn, although a lovely season in the year, brings lots of changes for drivers; including dazzling sun, low sun and the icy morning windscreens. To ensure you are not affected by the season, it is critical to plan ahead.

Windscreen

Improve vision and counteract the bad dazzle from low sun by making sure your windscreen is clean, inside and out. All drivers will find a buildup of hazy film on the inside of the screen over time. Dazzle is also intensified by scratches, abrasions and chips on the outside.

Windscreen Washer Fluid

A good quality washer fluid, diluted with the correct amount of water will reduce the chance of your washer fluid freezing. Check your handbook to ensure you are filling the correct reservoir, and use a purpose made additive rather than engine anti-freeze.

Antifreeze

Not just important in the colder times of the year, antifreeze is important all year round, due to the additives contained within, which help prevent corrosion and also improve summer cooling. Your levels of antifreeze should be checked as part of the regular service schedule.

Frozen engine damage is extremely expensive, so now is a good time to check your antifreeze concentration. Many garages offer a cheap of even free winter check at this time of the year.

There are lots of different types of antifreeze and mixing different types may cause engine damage, if in doubt use the services of a garage to avoid any costly mistakes.

Windscreen Wipers

Wiper blades will last for a maximum of two years new blades clear the screen more effectively and therefore helps reduce dazzle. How long has it been since your changed your wiper blades? It may be a good time to renew worn blades.

Battery

Failure of your battery is one of the most common causes of breakdown during any time of year, this rate increases significantly in the winter months when electrical loads are higher. If you are encountering any sign of your battery struggling now, it is quite likely that it will fail at some point during the winter. It makes sense to renew your battery now, rather than have the inconvenience and hassle of an unplanned failure in the coming months.

Bulbs

Checking your bulbs should be part of your regular car checks (at least once a week), not forgetting brake and number plate lights. Your vehicle handbook will show you how to change bulbs; however, some headlight bulbs may require a visit to a garage.

It may be a good idea to carry some spare bulbs, and should your bulb fail while on a journey, you will be equipped to change this without significant disruption to your journey.

Tyres

Check your tyres for condition, pressure and tread depth as part of your regular car checks, your handbook will show the correct pressures for your vehicle.

Although the current legal limit for tyres is 1.6mm, the AA recommend at least 3mm of tread for winter motoring. If the treads are getting low, is it worth buying new tyres now before the colder weather sets in?

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