We have recently been treated to some lovely summer weather here in the UK and it’s definitely feeling like summer. This is the perfect time to give your car its summer health check.
The good news is that you can carry these out at home.
Coolant or anti-freeze is great in the winter as it helps your car’s engine not freeze but in the summer it also removes excessive heat from the engine which is very important to avoid especially in hot summer traffic. To check that you have enough coolant, locate your radiator reservoir and make sure the coolant level is between the maximum and minimum lines.
Oil is essential for your engine. Without oil, your engine would very quickly seize up and cause you to break down. To check your oil, locate your dipstick and make sure the oil level is in the middle of the max and min level.
Spare tyre, jack and locking wheel nut key
It is important to make sure you have both items in your car in case you get a puncture and need to change your cars tyre. It’s important to note that no one (not even a recovery vehicle) will be able to take your wheel off without the wheel nut key. It is best practice to keep these items together, most sensibly in your boot.
Screen wash and wiper blades
Make sure you top up your screen wash before any journey as it is essential for removing dirt or insects from your windscreen which if left without clearing can obscure your vision. It is also important to make sure that your wiper blades are fully functioning to ensure that you can see the road clearly. You can tell if you need to change these by checking your blades for any splits that may cause streaks on your screen.
There are a couple of important things to check with your tyres; tyre pressures, tyre treads and any cracking/ bulging. Check in your handbook to find out what the desired front and rear pressures should be. You can fill your tyres up with air at most garages or at home with a car tyre pump. You must also check that your tyre tread is legal. The legal limit is 1.6mm. To measure this, stand a 20p piece in the tread, if you can see the outer edge then you will need to change your tyre. The last thing to check is the overall condition of the car. Look out for any cracks or bulges in the tread and sidewall as these will need to be looked after.
You may need some assistance with this one but checking that all your lights work is still just as important in summer as it is in winter. Make sure to check all indicators, reverse and especially break lights (you will need these in traffic).
You may not use your you air con throughout the winter so it’s important to test it before you start any trip in the sun. If your air con is blowing out hot air without any sign or cooling down, you may need to seek technical help.
We hope you and your car enjoy the summer whatever you decide (or can) do.