preparing your car for spring - spring is in the air

by jonathan crouch

preparing your car for spring - spring is in the air

With finer weather just around the corner, you're likely to be preparing to take to the road and see the sights in comfort. However, the wear and tear your car has endured over the winter months could easily spoil your fun. Everyone knows that prevention is better than cure, so here are some easy springtime steps to make sure your car gets you to your destination without any fuss.

OUTSIDE

*Start by washing your car to remove all traces of salt from the bodywork which will cause damage and corrosion if not properly removed. Take extra time to wash along the door seals and under the bumpers to remove all traces of grime.

*Add wax polish to protect the bodywork and be aware of any scratches, bumps or bangs that you may not have noticed in winter light. It's easier to mend a small problem than let it deteriorate.

*Clear windows of de-icer and grime and ensure windscreen wiper blades are not worn and need replacing. Clean washer jets to remove dirt and/or unblock them.

*Check tyre pressures - they expand when hot so check them first thing in the morning. Tread depth should be 1.6mm (legal minimum). Check the tyre for dangerous bulges and/or cuts.

UNDER THE BONNET

*Check all fluid levels, especially the radiator's as summer temperatures increase the risk of overheating.

*Oil Change - is it due? Is there enough in the engine?

INSIDE THE CAR

*Inspect all external lights - don't forget the fog, reversing and hazard lights, either.

*Check that all the electrics are working - windows, interior light, warning lights, sunroof.

*Monitor your mileage - is a service due? If in doubt, ask a local garage.

These simple checks will help keep you mobile and provide you with peace of mind.