With the summer holidays coming to a close and children about to return to school, the majority of us will see our travel patterns change in the oncoming weeks.
It’s very important that you plan ahead for the return of rush hour traffic in the coming weeks but, even more importantly, that you make sure your car is in good condition. Thankfully, AA Ireland have compiled a list of five essential back to school car checks to help you on your way to school.
A combination of good weather and no school runs over the summer can lead to many of people using their cars less. As the Autumn months set in, more and more cars will be back on the roads. Tyre pressure can reduce if your vehicle hasn’t been in use so it is highly important that you check your wheels ahead of the school run.
In Ireland, the minimum legal requirement for tyre thread depth is 1.6mm. However, AA Rescue recommends replacing your tyre when the thread depth falls below 3mm in order to best protect the safety of you and your family.
Like your tyres, a car being idle for a lengthy period of time can weaken its battery. Batteries generally should be replaced every five years.
Check under your car’s bonnet, its very important to check that you have the right amount of coolant, and if necessary, top it up with the correct type of antifreeze.
While you’re checking your coolant, don’t forget to check the engine oil and top it up if necessary. Depending on the car manufacturer’s guidelines you may need to check the oil level up to every fortnight and particularly before any lengthy journeys. If you find that your car is using oil at a high rate it may be a sign that the engine is an issue and you should seek urgent assistance.
As well as checking under the bonnet, it’s important to check the condition of your spare wheel and that any emergency tools are still working. Getting familiar with using these tools can help prevent some roadside panic should you happen to breakdown
With the summer’s good weather, windscreen wipers have rarely been in use for the last few months. With winter on its way, they’ll be back in full use, so don’t forget to check the current condition of the wiper blades. When they become worn down, wiper blades will smear the windscreen and can reduce your visibility. Changing the wiper blades before they reach this stage will reduce and possibly prevent an accident on the road.
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