With the holiday period fast approaching, and we start counting down the days ‘til holidays, it’s important not to forget about your vehicle in the pre-Christmas chaos.
If you’re preparing to hit the road these holidays, here are a few simple checks that you should put on your “to do” list to ensure that you and your family have safe travels these holidays.
- Get your car serviced (by a qualified mechanic).
- Fluids. Check your vehicle’s fluid levels and ensure they’re topped up, click here for our DIY instructions.
- Hoses. Inspect hoses for any cracks or splits.
- Clamps. These hold all your hoses in place, ensure they are secure.
- Belts. Just like your hoses, they need to be checked regularly to ensure they are not split or worn.
- Leaks. Inspect under the car to see if there are any leaks. This can help you identify any potential issues before they become major problems.
- Tyres. Check the tread. It’s important to have good tread on all tyres.
- While your inspecting your tyres, check the tyre pressure and ensure they are inflated correctly.
- Spare tyre. Easily forgotten about and can get you into trouble if you don’t. Check to ensure your spare tyre is inflated correctly and has good tread before heading off. You don’t want to get a flat tyre half way there and then realise the spare is flat too. If you’ve never changed a car tyre before, click here for our DIY instructions.
- Battery. If you have an old battery or are just not sure how old your battery is, it’s good to have this checked to ensure that it’s in good working order. A standard car battery usually has a lifespan of around 4-5 years. If you’re unsure of the age of the battery prior to any major road trip it’s probably a good idea to replace it with a new one.
- Window wiper blades. You’ll want your windscreen to be as clean and clear as possible so check that the wiper blades work correctly. If they’re worn and smearing bug guts everywhere, then they’ll need replacing. It’s an easy DIY job, or you can get your mechanic to change them over for you.
So, there you go. A few simple checks that will ensure your car is in tip top shape these holidays. And while you’re at it, why not throw a few of these essentials in the back just in case. That is if you can find room between the kids’ bikes, the 8 suitcases, a ridiculous amount of bedding and a mountain of food.
- Water. This is essential in case you have an issue with your radiator. You only need around 5 litres to help top you up until the next town or service station. Letting the radiator run dry is a very costly exercise that no-one needs. Ordinary water is fine in an emergency, distilled water is better, and engine coolant is the best.
- Jumper leads. Really important to have in your car most of the time anyway. Any issues with the battery not working then you will be able to jump start it. If you’ve never jump started a car, check out our how to here.
- Jerry can. Let’s face it, when the kids are in the car all whining and carrying on “are we there yet?”, it’s easy to forget to check petrol gauge or else think you can make it to the next petrol station. Handy tip: make sure it’s new and clean as even an empty can will smell in a confined space.
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