Top 10 tips for looking after your vehicle
At Tudor Rose it’s our duty to look after your vehicle – but what about before and after your visit to us? We understand the importance of maintaining your car and keeping it in top condition, which is why we’ve put together this handy checklist.
Tip 1: Buy new or buy reliable!
You can only maintain your vehicle, if what you have is maintainable.
Buying new will guarantee a reliable and looked after car – or your retailer will be liable for any faults. Having a car without as much as a scratch means it’s a lot easier to notice any new issues.
But what if you’re buying second hand? Only use reliable and trusted websites or sellers, and always test the car before handing over any cash. A second opinion may also help, particularly when buying privately. Ensure the car has a full MOT and service history, ideally having been serviced within the last few months.
Tip 2: Find a garage you can trust.
Repairing and servicing your car can be expensive, so it’s important to have a trustworthy local garage you can rely on not to overcharge you.
Ask your friends and family for recommendations and do your research – A quick browse online could highlight any potential ‘rogue traders’ and equally you could find somewhere with lots of great reviews, just down the road.
Tip 3: Keep track of MOTs and services
Taking your car for its annual MOT and keeping a full service history is a great way of looking after your vehicle. Not only does an MOT ensure your car is road-legal, but it will also highlight any potential issues to keep an eye on.
Your garage will provide you with a list of ‘advisory notices’ and we suggest taking ‘notice’ and getting these items fixed sooner rather than later.
Tip 4: Warning lights
The clue is in the name! Warning lights on the dashboard are there for a reason. If you notice a light on the dashboard and don’t know what it means, check your car’s manual and then consult with your local garage to ensure the problem is fixed. It could save you a lot of hassle!
Tip 5: Repair damage sooner rather than later!
Had a small bump but can’t be bothered to get it fixed? Does that small chip really need filling? Tyres looking a little worse for wear?
A small chip will only get worse. That ‘little bump’ may only look small on the outside. And that tiny cut on the tyre could actually be fatal.
Repairing any damage, no matter how small, can also help maintain the value of your vehicle should you be looking to sell.
Tip 6: Keep oiled up!
This could be the most simple, but the most cost effective tip on the list. Driving without enough oil in your car could leave you needing an entire new engine, so check your oil regularly. We recommend checking your oil every 3,000 to 5,000 miles or every three months.
Check out this helpful guide on checking your oil:
Tip 7: Know your car!
If something doesn’t feel right, you’re probably not wrong. Driving your car regularly means you get used to how your car feels. If the steering feels unusual or the sound of the engine seems different, it could ‘indicate’ a problem (excuse the pun).
A quick trip to your local garage and you’ll soon know whether your instincts were correct – it’s better to be safe than sorry!
Tip 8: ‘Wax on. Wax off.’
Keeping it clean not only makes your vehicle look and smell great, but it also helps maintain its value. Cleaning your car helps protect items like your windscreen wipers and you’ll find a number of cleaning products are now designed to reduce the risk of scratches. Cleaning your lights and mirrors are particularly important, especially during winter months as any dirt can reduce visibility.
Tip 9: ‘Lighten up!’
Not only is checking your lights are working important for navigating through those dark winter nights, but it will also prevent you from being pulled over by the police – and you won’t be able to miss their lights!
Brake lights are particularly important, assuming you don’t want fellow road users driving into the back of you, leaving you with a hefty bill from the insurance company.
We suggest checking your lights every few weeks, particularly if your car is older, and we recommend checking your lights before any long journeys.
Tip 10: Drive safe!
Last but not least, driving safely is a sure fire way of ensuring your vehicle lasts. Speed limits are there for a reason, as is the Highway Code. Consider all road users, and remain alert and cautious at all times.
Accidents happen, but driving with safety in mind will help reduce the risk of damaging your vehicle and will go a long way to maintaining a scratch-free car.