Repair Winter wear and tear with a Spring health check.
Just as we can all suffer from the extra stresses and strains brought on by cold
Winter months, so too can our cars. With a thorough Spring health check, however,
you can go a long way towards preventing Winter wear and tear problems developing
into anything more serious. The following 5 point checklist gives you a good idea
what to look out for – and the action you can take...
1. Problem : Due to the salt and chemicals on Winter roads, grit,
grime and spray can all start to cause corrosion on your car’s bodywork.
Solution: Hose the car down thoroughly, paying particular attention to the wheel
arches and the car’s underside, where dirt accumulates and can even damage rubber
components such as shock absorbers and drive shaft gaiters. Keep a look out for
chips and scratches as you go and get them seen to before rust sets in.
2. Problem : Tyres take more than their usual share of punishment
throughout Winter, causing excessive wear and tear, splits and water damage. Whilst
the legal tyre tread depth is 1.6mm, braking and cornering in particular deteriorate
Solution: It pays to check your tyres over thoroughly – looking for nicks and cracks
in particular – whilst also paying attention to the correct inflation pressure.
If your tyre is on the threshold of the legal limit, you may want to consider being
safe than sorry. Don’t forget to make sure the spare is up to scratch too.
3. Problem : If antifreeze is running low or is more than two years old, major
internal components may not be fully protected against water damage.
Solution: Check the antifreeze levels against the recommended levels – or ask your
local garage to do it for you – to ensure your engine parts are fully protected.
4. Problem : Wiper blades can become split and worn after scraping across frozen
windscreens, which could leave streaks and smears behind, obscuring the driver’s
Solution: To provide a clean wiper sweep, renew wiper blades and add screen wash
detergent to the washer reservoir
5. Problem : Muddy feet and condensation can cause interior damage, creating
odours and damp patches.
Solution: Open the car doors to give the interior a good airing, vacuum carpets
and upholstery and use a specialist cleaner to remove stubborn stains.