We may only be heading into September, but winter will be here before we know it – and with the colder months comes ice, snow and fog. To give you a helping hand, we’ve rounded up everything you need to know to make sure that your van is ready for the colder months.
- Check your tyres
When the temperatures drop, tyre pressures do, too. But that’s not the only thing – tyre tread patterns can wear down, reducing your grip and making it more dangerous to drive on the roads. Check them frequently – both before the winter arrives and at regular intervals during the winter period – to reduce the chances of skidding. Tyre Safe’s 20p test is one of the best ways to check for tread, but if you’re concerned about the safety of your van, then switch to winter tyres that offer better traction and keep you sturdy on the road.
- Test your brakes
You should be checking your brakes at regular periods anyway, but when winter comes, it’s even more important to have pads and discs that are in full working order. Check and test them to ensure there’s enough life left in them – you can do so by driving your vehicle and also by looking through your wheel and physically checking the pads. Indeed, many pads today are designed to produce a “squeak” when they begin to wear out, so test for that, and always visit your local garage if you’re not 100% confident.
- Upgrade your vehicle
If your van is old, out of date or even broken, it’s essential that you find a replacement as soon as you can. Winter is the most dangerous time of year to be on the road, so consider splashing out on a new model or try van leasing if you don’t have the capital or want to return your van at the end of a three-year period. Websites such as Leasewell offer cost-effective leasing and contract hire options for a wide range of vans, including Ford, Fiat, Mercedes and Volkswagen, and you can even part exchange your old car to save money.
- Visit the garage
Whether you’re hopeless with cars or you’re just too busy, consider visiting your local garage for a once over. It’s essential that your vehicle undergoes regular health checks, servicing and MOTs, so book a place before the winter comes to give you peace of mind. Many chain garages offer free winter health checks on cars and vans, where they’ll check your battery, light bulbs, windscreen wipers, oil levels and screen wash levels – five things that are commonly overlooked when checking on your own.
There you have it – four things that you must do if you want to ensure your van works throughout the winter. Remember that more car accidents take place during the winter because of road conditions like snow, sleet and slush, so don’t overlook the importance of having a van that’s in full working order.