Sub-zero temperatures can seriously damage cars and, after a week of treacherous driving conditions, many vehicles will be feeling the strain. With more bad weather due, it's important that drivers check their car for winter readiness so they can remain safe on the roads; advises Skoda's Aftersales experts.
When temperatures drop a car's battery can begin to fail, wiper blades can rip as they stick to the windscreen and tyre wear can accelerate after skidding on icy tarmac. To help its customers remain safe on the roads this winter, Skoda is offering free car health checks and advice at participating retailers.
Skoda Head of Aftersales, John Bower, explains: "After a period of extreme weather, like the UK recently experienced, it is essential that motorists carry out some basic checks to ensure their car is safe, legal and roadworthy.
"Skoda retailers are renowned for their customer service and are happy to offer their knowledge and expertise to any Skoda driver who is concerned about the condition of their car. They can undertake all these checks within around 20 minutes and could help prevent drivers being stuck on the side of the road for hours this winter, or worse, involved in an accident."
The free health check includes the inspection of the battery, coolant levels, windscreen wipers and tyres.
Increased strain placed on car batteries from internal heaters, rear windscreen heaters, headlights, and windscreen wipers, coupled with the reduced level of charge held at lower temperatures, means it is more likely to fail in the winter. The lower temperatures and shorter daylight hours associated with winter driving means battery failure can be extremely dangerous.
Coolant with anti-freeze is also a winter essential. Getting the ratio of coolant to water correct is difficult and if mixed incorrectly can have an impact on the car's cooling system performance. Skoda retailers can check the level and strength of the coolant and make recommendations if either requires attention.
Salt, grit and ice can cause damage to windscreens, wipers and bodywork and possibly corrosion to some components. Driving with these parts damaged is not only dangerous but can be illegal, with drivers facing prosecution and a hefty fine if their tyres' tread is below 1.6mm. Skoda retailers are able to advise customers about how to ensure they are driving safely and within the law.Published 19 January 2010