Prepping for winter
It’s important to make sure your vehicle is safe to drive in the winter, especially in icy conditions. A winter service will include the following, which we offer here at Protran Garage!
1) Battery Test
We’ll perform a battery check to make sure your battery is charged, as you’ll be draining a lot more power using the car heater, blower, and increased use of lights. Moreover, when the temperature falls below zero degrees, a battery will only be able to offer two-thirds of its power. Failed or flat car batteries account for a fifth of all breakdowns.
2) Tyre Inspection
Correct tyre pressure is essential for steering on icy roads, as they’re more likely to slip. A 3mm depth would be recommended in winter as opposed to the legal minimum of 1.6mm, for improved grip. You could also consider buying a set of winter tyres. Check out our post about tyres to know what to look out for!
3) Coolant & Antifreeze Top Up
Antifreeze prevents the water in your engine’s cooling system from freezing. Engine coolant should be a mix of half water and half antifreeze, but people often make the mistake of topping it up with water, which dilutes the antifreeze and can lead to the engine overheating. Furthermore, if the water freezes in your vehicle’s radiator, it will expand and can cause engine pipes to split. You can check if your coolant level is between the minimum and maximum.
4) Windscreen Wiper Check
You’ll be using your wipers a lot more in the winter months. We’ll check that there aren’t any cracks in your wipers, and will also look out for chips in the windscreen. Wiper level fluid will be topped up too if required. Be careful not to rip off the wipers if they’re frozen! A screen wash will help removes of any grime caused by all the extra grit.
5) Oil Level
You can check if your oil is between the minimum and maximum level on the car’s dipstick. Insufficient oil could cause your car engine to seize up and may need to be thinner in winter, so it’s important to have it checked.
Daylight hours are a lot less in Winter, which means you’ll be using the front and rear lights far more often. Salt and dirt can also impair the visibility of your lights, which often causes road accidents; and driving with a faulty light is illegal. It might be a good idea to carry extra bulbs with you.
We would also recommend keeping a Winter emergency kit in your car in case of a breakdown – including an ice scraper, extra winds washer fluid and a flashlight.
Bring your car into Protran Garage for a winter service today and get 10% off all parts!
Written by Amber Callender