The leaves are falling and the nights are drawing in – Winter is coming! This means exciting times such as Halloween, Bonfire Night, and Christmas, but it can also mean unpredictable weather, traffic jams, or dangerous driving conditions.
However, with the quick and simple hacks below, you can easily prepare your car for the challenges ahead and enjoy the Winter season safely.
1. Add An Emergency Kit
Winter driving presents several challenges. Frosty roads make braking slippery, foggy conditions impede visibility, and congested periods on the roads can all make a roadside breakdown more likely.
This is why there has never been a better time to add an emergency kit to your car. This could include essentials such as a spare tyre (if you know how to fit your own), blankets, a torch or high visibility items, and a mobile phone charger and any details of your roadside breakdown cover.
You may also wish to include things that are specific to you or your family, such as medication, snacks, water, or entertainment. You do not need to overload your car, but a few essentials can help to give peace of mind.
Be sure to ensure that your roadside cover is up to date too, and that you know the number to call in an emergency.
2. Check (and replace) Your Tyres
Winter road conditions are especially treacherous, and are a large contributing factor to why there are often more accidents in the Winter months.
One way to help prevent accidents is to ensure that your tyres are in good working order, and to replace them if necessary. This may be a replacement that just ensures the integrity and grip of your tyres, or could be a more specific option.
Winter tyres, for example, are specifically made to withstand harsher Winter temperatures and conditions. This can be especially important for anyone living in more rural or remote areas, or those susceptible to heavy snow.
Visit a reputable garage for advice and consider investing in the safest, most weather-appropriate tyres that you can afford.
3. Be Energy Efficient
A great tip all year round – but perhaps especially in Winter – is to drive in the most energy-efficient way possible. This helps to avoid unnecessary wear and tear on your car, but can also save you money and fuel.
Driving in an energy-efficient way can mean selecting the right gear, anticipating the road ahead so that sudden speed changes are not necessary, reducing wind speed, and more. For many drivers, it can even mean making the switch to an electric or hybrid vehicle! The driving range of electric cars is increasing all the time, making them an ever-more popular option.
Whatever ways you can improve the efficiency of your driving, Winter is a great time to do it so you can save money and stay safe on the roads.
4. Invest In Your Lights (or Keep Them Clean)
Excellent lights are a must for the Winter season. They should be reliable, effective, and of course – clean!
Add a few minutes to your regular driving checks and routine to clean your essential lights before and after driving. This is so that there is no build-up of dirt or debris that could obscure them at a crucial time – especially since the sun sets earlier. Falling leaves and frost can also both be more likely to obscure your vision in Winter.
Consider investing in new or better lights in preparation for the Winter season too. While there are many additional ways to reduce spending on your car, safety features should never be one of them. Always aim for the best you can afford.
5. Add A Wintery Scent
A simple, fun, and affordable way to prepare your car for Winter is to add a seasonal scent! These can be in the form of hanging scented items, a spray, cleaning wipes, and more.
Not only can these items be a great way to make your car feel fresh and hygienic, they will also make it a pleasure to drive. On nights where you may spend more time in traffic than usual, or have family or little ones to entertain, a festive scent can help make the space more pleasant.