As families start hitting the roads for the summer get-away, the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) is urging drivers to make sure their car is up to the journey.
Ensuring the tyres are safe and legal – including the spare – is at the top of its checklist, followed by checking coolant levels and making sure the air conditioning is working (wishful thinking).
The IMI turned to technician John Tinham, who runs John Tinham Motor Engineers Ltd in Chelmsford for some recommendations before starting your summer journey.
Here are some of Tinham’s top tips for a successful summer break.
Tyres –always check tyre condition (including tread depths to make sure that they are legal and will last the long journey) and pressures before a long trip and adjust for loads being carried – this helps to keep fuel economy at its best.
Always check coolant levels when the engine is cold.
Have your air conditioning serviced and checked for operation – it will help if the weather is hot and you are stuck in traffic, by keeping the family cool, calm, refreshed and alert when driving.
If you are towing a caravan, check over the caravan’s tyres and brakes, especially if it has been standing for a long period. Also, make sure the towing vehicles brakes are in good condition and the brake fluid has been changed – brake fluid has a higher tendency to boil when towing.
Make sure the spare tyre or inflation device is in good condition. Make sure you know where the locking wheel is stored – it’s not much use if stored at home.
The IMI is the governing body for the Automotive Technician Accreditation (ATA) and Automotive Management Accreditation (AMA) schemes; it is also the home for members and professionally registered individuals working in the motor industry. Its members come from across all areas of the motor industry and are recognised for their skills and experience.