Preparing your vehicle for winter: 10 top tips

Preparing your vehicle for winter: 10 top tips

By Lewis Hughes
12 December 2018

Driving in cold weather can be a challenge, with reduced visibility and low temperatures, it's vital that your car is in proper working order. According to research by recovery firms, you're twice as likely to break down in winter months.

We've pulled together our essential winter car checklist to make sure yourself and your colleague's cars are ready for the worst the weather has to offer.

  • Tyres. Check tyres for pressure and tread depth. The legal minimum is 1.6mm, but many garages recommend at least 3mm depth during winter as this gives better grip.
  • Coolant / Anti-freeze. Engine coolant should be a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze but becomes diluted over time so you may need to top up.
  • Wiper blades. Check your wipers by running your finger down the blades to check for nicks and tears. Also check for any chips in the windscreen, as these can grow in the cold weather.
  • Screen wash. Give your windscreen a clean inside and out and top up your screen washer fluid.
  • Light bulbs. Check that all lights, indicators and rear reflectors are clean.
  • Battery. If your car is having problems starting get the battery checked out and replaced if necessary.
  • Preparation. Before setting off on a longer journey, check the weather forecast and travel news and allow extra journey time to avoid having to rush.
  • Oil. Check your oil level is correct so your engine is well and truly lubricated.
  • Breakdown cover. Check your breakdown policy and remember to take a contact phone number with you on all journeys.
  • Winter car kit. Carrying a few items in the boot such as a hazard warning triangle, first aid kit, de-icer and scraper, torch, warm clothes and a small amount of food and drink will all come in handy if you have any problems.

Some dealers, garages and high street car spares shops sometimes offer free winter car health checks so it's always worth popping by and seeing what they have on offer.

Did you know we offer automatic licence checking as part of our Driver & Vehicle Check, and insurance validation as part of our Duty of Care management. Get in touch if you want to know more >> 


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