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Expert tips to protect your car this winter

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Many things can be done to protect our cars during winter, but how well are we prepared? As winter approaches, it's time to take a good look at our cars and prepare them for the cold weather that lies ahead.

Our cars are one of the most valuable things we own. They're probably more precious than fur coats and watches – so why do we take such little care of them?

It might be because they're a bit boring, but as well as the fact that we lack knowledge, the days are short, the weather is terrible. So here are some expert tips to protect your car this winter:

1. How NOT to de-ice your car:

Do not use hot or boiling water. It will crack your windscreen or cause other damage to the paintwork on the car. The best way to melt ice is with lukewarm water, while the best way to remove it is with a scraper.

2. Always keep the tank full in winter:

It might seem obvious, but one of the best ways to prevent your car from breaking down is to keep it well-fueled. If you run out of petrol, your car won't start. You might think it's annoying to have to refuel in winter, but you'll be even more annoyed if you're stuck in a snowdrift and have to be rescued by the AA because your car has broken down.

3. Keep an eye on tyres:

Winter tyre technology is improving all the time, and the latest models really can help prevent accidents during snowy or icy conditions. If you don't have winter tyres fitted, make sure the ones you've got are of good quality. Check for wear and tear or damage to the tread of all your tyres, and make sure they're pumped up to the correct pressure.

4. Take care when driving in snow:

It's essential to drive carefully in snow and ice. If you haven't got winter tyres already, stay well back from the car in front. If the car in front skids, you'll need to brake – and remember that if it's icy or snowy out there, your brakes are less effective.

5. Be aware of black ice:

It might be challenging to spot, but black ice is the most dangerous type of ice, particularly when you're travelling at speed. If the road seems to be wet, but there are no signs that any water has been spilt and the surface is not de-iced, you could be heading for black ice – and that's when accidents happen.

6. Oil your locks:

Many cars these days lock automatically when you get up to about five miles an hour, but if your car doesn't, the locks could seize up in winter. So to protect them against that happening, squirt a little oil into them now and then.

7. Get your car checked:

Many motorists take their cars for a service just before the MOT test, but that's not particularly clever, as there is a service indicator for oil, water and air pressure. So get your car serviced before the weather turns bad, and you'll avoid all sorts of trouble.

8. Keep your car warm:

A cold car isn't only annoying; it's also an indication that you're going to struggle to get your engine started. So if you want a quick start, make sure the battery is in good shape, and the car's heating system is working.

9. Use anti-freeze:

OK, it sounds like anti-freeze is just another word for engine coolant - but it isn't. It's an entirely different chemical, and it's poisonous if you drink it. But used in the right way, it will keep your car in tip-top condition, and you can find out more by looking online or asking your garage to recommend a good anti-freeze.

10. Clear the screen:

If you want to see where you're going in winter, it's essential not to have a screen covered in mist or scratches. You can use ordinary washing-up liquid on the inside of the glass, but make sure it doesn't drip onto the paintwork.

11. Plan your trips

It’s better to check out the roads before coming. Uproad helps to pay for tolls in your way. Simple to use. So, you don’t need to wait for your turn. Also, analyze the weather with possible snowing.


Winter is on the way, and if your car isn't ready for it, you're going to be in trouble. Keeping your car clean and well maintained will help it cope with the winter months, and you can find out more by looking online or asking your garage to recommend a good anti-freeze.

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