In the UK we rarely experience extreme weather over prolonged periods of time. Our summers consist of several weeks of 22C degree heat with maybe the odd day at 35C, while our winters are mainly wet with an odd snow blizzard bringing the nation to a standstill in a matter of minutes, only to have melted 24 hours later! Generally speaking, our winters aren’t that harsh and while we are currently enjoying a relatively mild November, I for one, had not yet considered making sure my car was ready for the colder weather. To be honest the thought hadn’t even crossed my mind, the car isn’t that old, it’s fully road worthy (as far as the laws for keeping it that way are concerned- MOT etc), what else is there to do? I’ve got lots of other stuff to think about at the moment with three demanding children that keep growing out of their clothes (whole new winter wardrobes are currently needed!) and with Christmas looming, the car hasn’t had a look in!
Luckily for me, my car is one of around half the cars on the road that lets you know if your tyre pressure has dropped below a safe level. The warning light prompted me to make some checks and made me realise how easily I could have missed it without the warning, as none of the tyres looked flat. Not only would my already expensive-to-run 4×4, be even less economical with under-inflated tyres, but they are also more likely to wear unevenly causing a need to replace sooner and worse still, will not be working effectively, increasing stopping distances and leading to possible accidents. Though only one of my tyres had triggered the warning light, on inspection, all of them were heading that way- instant relief that I didn’t have a puncture, but shock at how much pressure they can lose through temperature change alone. They were filled to 42 PSI during the summer and had dropped to around 26PSI!!
Here are 5 simple, quick checks that we should all be doing now, to ensure our cars will be safe on the road this winter:
Check all tyre pressures
- Takes around 5 minutes at the petrol station
- Basic physics explains that tyre pressure decreases in the cold
- Low pressure doesn’t necessarily mean leaks
- If one is low, it’s likely the others are too
Check tyre tread depth
- Takes less than 5 minutes
- Though the legal limit is 1.6mm, anything less than 3mm could effect the performance of your tyres
- Remember to check the inner, outer and middle part of the tread
- Many tyres have a Tread Wear Indicator which is basically another mark indicating 1.6-2mm above the base of the grove
Check overall condition of tyres
- Takes less than 5 minutes and can be done while doing points 1 & 2
- Check the other areas of the tyre, looking for bulges or gouges
Check signs of irregular wear
- Will have become apparent during the previous checks
- This can indicate another issue with the car such as alignment or suspension
Check and examine the spare tyre
- Another 5 minutes depending on where your spare is located
- Don’t forget to do all of the above checks with your spare tyre too!
I was shocked to learn that over 40% of cars are driving around right now with under-inflated or illegal tyres, with most of those drivers being completely unaware of the risk they are taking. We all see and hear of accidents on the road every day and though I realise that there are many causes for concern on the roads, if everyone made these few simple checks, at least some of those accidents could be avoided.
If you would like further information or discover that your tyres need replacing, take a look at the Point S website. There are multiple Point S trye dealers throughout the UK, as well as having over 3000 depots across 28 countries. The best thing is that you don’t even need to find out what size tyre you need -yes they come in different sizes ladies ;), you simply type in your registration and they work it out for you!
Please like and share this post to help raise awareness and remind all road users to check their tyres. Let’s all stay safe on the road this winter.
This is a paid collaborative post with Point S. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
12 thoughts on “5 Simple Checks to Stay Safe on the Road this Winter”
Thank you for the reminder! On the back of your article I have booked to get my chipped windscreen fixed tomorrow morning!
Thanks for sharing this, I’m in need of checking my car ready for the crazy weather ahead and this has reminded me! X #KCACOLS
Awesome advice, winter can be dangerous on the roads! We are in Spring here now, just came out of winter. #EatsleepblogRT
Great advice hun. In Europe we tend to get the winter tyres on. Sure hubby will have us sorted but you’ve prompted me to check. Thank you for linking up to #EatSleepBlogRT
Excellent tips indeed! We don’t get snow where I live, but it’s a good reminder of basic safety nonetheless. Thank you! #EatSleepBlogRT
Great advice, we’ve got a lot of travelling planned this winter so this will really come in handy! #KCACOLS
Great tips, I don’t have a car anymore however I always checked my tyres when I visited the petrol station. Kill 2 birds with one stone! #kcacols
I’ll be honest and say I tend to rely on what the car’s computer tells me! I have NEVER check tyre pressures! But the tread I have checked before now and found that they were borderline! Great tips here!
Thanks for linking up with #KCACOLS and hope to see you again soon x
These are such important points. I need to go and check our car right now! #KCACOLS @WithFranca @becsterdotcom
ssuch a good reminder. we just had the tyres done on the back as the tread was nearly at its limit 🙂 i really want snow though this year, even though its a pain! #KCACOLS
great reminder! we just had the tyres changed as the tread was nearly at the limit. I really want snow though this year!! #KCACOLS
I don’t drive – but my hubby does and driving in cold conditions can be scary. My Mum hates driving in the snow, she’d rather walk miles than get her car out. Great tips. Sarah #FabFridayPost