Winter Driving Preparation Tips

The cold-snap has arrived and with the clocks going back this month the gloomy winter days and dark evenings are well and truly looming.

"There's nothing worse than breaking down on a cold winter night, stranded on the side of the road," says Lee Taylor, Automotive Director at Mondial Assistance. "Between November 2009 and January 2010, Mondial attended 15% more call outs than the period June to August 2010. Our experience reveals that a few basic and regular checks can dramatically reduce the risk of getting caught out.

"We urge motorists to set aside some time to carry out a series of simple checks. Some may seem like common sense, but you'll be surprised at how many drivers forget after the summer break. For example, it is crucial to ensure all your lights are clean and working properly. Always replace any broken bulbs immediately. If you don't, you will not only find it difficult to see the road clearly, you run the risk of not being seen by other drivers.

In addition, it is a sensible idea to put together an emergency winter survival kit so that you are prepared should you breakdown. Remember to include a torch, blanket, ice scraper and a first aid kit."

Make sure you minimise the risk of breakdown this winter by following some Top Tips:

Winter Motoring Tips - Car Maintenance
  • Get your car checked - a professional check is worth it, for added peace of mind
  • Check your tyres - rain, snow and ice can make roads lethal. Check the tread is over 1.6mm or more in the winter and check tyre pressures too
  • Light the way - keep lights clean and make sure they are working
  • Get charged up - a dead battery is the main cause of breakdowns, so get it checked and replaced if necessary
  • Cooling System - ensure this is checked and that the anti-freeze content meets the manufacturer requirements
  • Wipers - check windscreen wipers and replace if they fail to clear the screen correctly
  • Fuel - ensure you have more than enough for your journey
Winter Motoring Tips - Before You Leave
  • Take a fully charged mobile
  • Shovel in case of snow
  • De-icer and a scraper for windows
  • Blanket and warm clothing in case the worst happens
  • Sturdy shoes or wellies
  • Some snacks, such as chocolate bars
  • Extra fuel
27 October 2010 Staff

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