The global pandemic lockdown means cars are not in use as much. A post-lockdown trip with the car requires thorough scrutiny before going on the roads.
Driving requires practice to master. With the lockdown in major parts of the globe, people have seen better days exemplifying their efficiency. Furthermore, letting your car parked idle in the garage will hamper the motor, battery, and other parts’ performance.
You can check the driving lessons Glasgow to have a quick run through your skill along with vehicle maintenance to steer clear from accidents. In this article, we have put together an essential checklist for your car before you drive off.
1. Engine Oil
Checking the motor oil level is a significant yet straightforward task you must do before taking your car to the road. Having the right lubricant level is essential as it acts as an anti-friction agent for the internal-combustion engine. It also cools down the engine temperature and shields from dust.
To ensure correct reading, park the car at a leveled surface and switch off the engine. A couple of minutes are required for the lubricant to flow back to its operating temperature. Now open the bonnet by pulling the lever. Next, you need to pull out the dipstick, wipe it off with a clean cloth, and insert it again into the guide tube. Let the dipstick go as far deep as possible and pull it out gently.
Be mindful while checking the oil stain marks on the dipstick. You won’t need topping up if the mark is in the upper limit. For a lower limit indication, your car will need an immediate refill of engine oil. And in case the mark shows somewhere in between the maximum and minimum level, refill if the engine is going to pull high loads.
2. Brake Fluid and Coolant Level
Identify the brake fluid reservoir that comes with a cap on the top. Check the fluid level to ensure that it remains between the topmost and the lowest scale mark in the reservoir. You can use regular water for the washer fluid. Remember to add antifreeze to avoid hassle during cold weather.
Check the engine coolant level. Wait for the engine to cool down completely. Notice the level of the scaling on the coolant reservoir. A mark below the minimum level requires a refill. It’s essential to keep these fluids leveled to optimize car performance.
Letting your car parked idle for weeks or months might not be a good idea. It may cause excessive loss of battery power, requiring a jump start. Before starting the engine, these batteries need to be charged fully. A portable charger is also an excellent option to invest in if you haven’t driven your car for an extended period and need a jump start without another vehicle.
So it’s essential to drive your car often to preserve battery power. Check for the warning lights and inspect your car battery’s status if you haven’t used it for a long time due to lockdown.
4. Tire Alignment and Tool Kit
Check the air pressure of the wheels. Be warned if there are any visual abnormalities in the tires. Always adjust the pressure according to the vehicle load. Look for cracks, wear and tear on the tires.
If you let your vehicle rest for a more extended period, there is a high possibility that the tires will lose air. So it’s wise to keep an extra wheel in the car for any emergency. Carry a tool kit. Ensure that all the tools required to change the spare tire, including the screw jacks, are in place.
5. Fuel Meter and Oil Leakage
It is crucial to check the fuel level before any road trip. If the level goes below the optimum amount, then the fuel tank needs a refill. Check for any oil leakage as this might cause serious hazards if left unchecked.
6. Gearbox and Handbrake
Test your car gearbox and handbrake before taking the car on the road after lockdown. All the five gear positions, from first to fifth, and reverse should be adequately checked. Ensure that the brakes of your car are working right.
7. Dashboard Warning Lights and Indicators
Start your car engine and check if you get any warning signals in the driver information system. There are individual standard dashboard lights for all cars. Whereas some are more precise, depending on the model. Turning off of Warning lights within a few seconds is a part of a routine check.
Always check whether all the lights on the dashboard are off to ensure the car’s proper functioning. If you ignore any important indicators before hitting the road, you might be putting your safety at risk or might end up with an expensive auto repair bill.
8. Car Horn and Lights Status
You cannot drive a vehicle with a broken horn. After the lockdown, some driving skills will be rusty for many drivers out there. So, you will need to use the horn to signal for a vehicle’s approach, draw attention to threats, or avoid accidents. They are usually loud to cover road users within a large perimeter.
In case your car horn is not working correctly, immediately seek a mechanic’s assistance to look over for broken wires. Do not hesitate to check the status of all the lights in your car, including turn signal, sidelights, brake lights, headlights, tail light, rear fog lights, and number plate lights.
9. Mirror Alignment
Be sure to adjust the mirror alignments of the side and rearview mirrors. They help the driver navigate properly.
10. Carry Legal Car Documents
Lastly, you must not forget to carry your legal car documents for any emergency. They come to the rescue if you get a speeding ticket or are asked to pull over for faulty driving.
So, before deciding to take out your car after the lockdown, invest some time to check all the necessary vehicle parts. It will save you and your fellow drivers and save you a tonne of money in repair bills.