Giving your car a spring clean

Early spring is a good time to take stock of your vehicle and clean it up for the coming months.

Winter can be a harsh time for your vehicle and, over the colder months, it may have gradually incurred a little damage. Now that spring has begun, it is a good opportunity to take stock of the kind of condition that your vehicle is in and assess if anything needs to be fixed.

Clean the exterior of your vehicle

As soon as salt spreading has stopped in your local area it is worth making sure the exterior of your car gets a thorough clean.

Grit and salt is great for making sure your car doesn't slide off the road but if it gets flung onto your vehicle and stuck then it can cause it to rust over time.

The underside of your vehicle is particularly in danger of rusting as your wheels will throw salt up at the machinery here.

For this reason, it is worth taking your vehicle to a car wash that specialises in cleaning the underneath. If rust is left untreated then it could leave to a costly repair bill at a later date.

Beware of Potholes

In addition to the damage that your car might face during the winter months, so too will the roads in your local area have taken a beating. This, in turn, could be hazardous to the condition of your vehicle.

With all the snow, ice and rain freezing onto the roads and thawing, this tends to cause potholes to open up. These largely become apparent during early spring.

This year is possibly one of the worst for potholes due to the fact that the UK has seen its wettest winter on record. In fact, the damage is so bad that the government has set aside £200 million in the Budget to repair the UK's roads.

However, the results of this will take some time to implement. Meanwhile, drivers should be conscious of the damage that they could incur from these potholes.

Driving over deep potholes at speed can affect aspects of your vehicle such as wheel alignment, tyres and suspension.

After going over a pothole, drivers should listen out in case they start to hear a vibration or a clunk of metal as this could suggest damage has been done to their suspension. If their steering begins to pull to one side, this could also suggest that wheel alignment is out.

When the vehicle is stopped, it is also worth checking over the condition of your tyres for cuts, bulges and tears. Additionally, if the tyres begin to lose pressure in the days following then this could also be a suggestion of damage.

Have your aircon checked

While working aircon may not seem like a necessity, the spring months are an occasion where it is worthwhile to have it working.

As a lot of dew and mist can develop on your windscreen during spring, due to the weather being slightly wetter, blasting it with aircon is the quickest way to clear it.

Additionally, aircon can be very useful for hayfever sufferers. When there is a high pollen count, this can get into the air vents and cause the driver's allergies to flare up. Having the aircon on will help to clear the air in the vehicle faster and make it much easier for them to drive.

Of course, working aircon is also a boon as the weather starts to heat up, particularly as the UK is notorious for being very warm one day and cold the next. Keeping the car cool is useful for comfort during this time and can lessen the chances of your passengers suffering from travel sickness.

Spring is a good time to get your aircon serviced as it is one of the times when you will need it most, yet it is best looked at by a mechanic.

Get a service

It is advisable to have your vehicle serviced annually and, with the damage that can be incurred during winter out of the way, spring is a good time to have this done.

Most mechanics will check over the exterior of your vehicle to make sure everything is in working condition, as well as your wheels and tyres.

They will also top up the fluids in your vehicle, including oil to keep your vehicle going and washer fluid so you can keep your windscreen clear.

  • On: 25 March 2014
  • By: CarShop

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