A Checklist For Your Vehicle’s Safety

Making sure you have completed a safety checklist of your vehicle is essential, especially before embarking on long journeys. For a comprehensive vehicle safety checklist, keep reading this guide by FitMyTracker to find out what you should do for your car to ensure everything is in check before you set out on your journey. 

Get A Complete Car Service

A Checklist For Your Vehicle's Safety

Getting a car service is usually best when done before the cold season, but you can still do it at any point throughout the year. Mechanics will recommend you get a car service at least once or twice per year.  

It’s most important to have a service done before or during the winter month, as the cold often leads to a greater deal of issues when it comes to vehicles. There are some garages that will also offer discounted and even completely free winter checks for your car. 

Mechanics typically check the following: tyres, antifreeze, oil, windscreen wipers, lights, and your vehicle’s battery. If you’re setting out on a particularly long journey, perhaps you are taking your vehicle abroad, it would be advisable to book your car into a garage for a general service to ensure your car is healthy and no small mechanical errors or issues are missed. 

Check Your Vehicle’s Tyre Tread 

This is particularly important when it’s icy and wet outside, it’s important to have tires that work well in order to prevent accidents. 

According to UK law, a minimum of 1.6 mm in depth is recommended for proper tyre grip. This can be checked easily at home using a 20-pence piece. A 20p coin has an outer edge of 2mm. To do this simply insert the coin into the tread grooves of your tyre, if you can’t see the outer ring of the 20p coin, your tread is above the legal limit and is fine to drive on. If your tyre doesn’t meet the minimum legal requirements then you will have to get these changed. 

Make Sure Your Brakes Are Working

A Checklist For Your Vehicle's Safety

Your brakes play a crucial role in protecting you while on the road. A faulty brake pad or an issue within the mechanics of your vehicle’s brakes could cause a major road traffic accident, leaving you and others in a potentially fatal incident. This is why checking your brake’s function properly is absolutely vital. 

To check your brakes simply press down on the brake pedal in a secure location, making sure your car comes to a complete stop. If you notice any squeaking or grinding noises as you do this, you may need to take your vehicle to a mechanic to check for faults. It would also be useful to ensure your brake lights are working too. Get somebody to check for you that the lights at the back of your vehicle glow red as you press the brake. 

Check Your Oil Levels 

Between every oil change, all vehicle owners should be checking their oil levels regularly. A lack of oil in your vehicle could result in your vehicle’s engine becoming damaged. 

Oil checks, for the most part, can be done at home. They are simple and easy to do, as long as you follow the specific instructions of your vehicle manufacturer. Take a look through the owner’s manual of your vehicle to ensure you are doing everything correctly. The simple steps required to check your oil levels are as follows:

  • Make sure your car engine is off
  • Lift the hood or bonnet of your vehicle
  • Find the dipstick 
  • Once clean use the dipstick to measure your oil levels
  • Some vehicles will have a line on the dipstick indicating if the oil is full 

Top Up Your Screenwash 

A Checklist For Your Vehicle's Safety

Visibility is absolutely vital in making sure you can drive safely. Keeping your windscreen clear of dirt, debris, smears, and smudges are imperative. Using proper screen wash is best for cleaning the glass of your windscreen. So, before you head off on a journey, long or short, be sure to check your car has enough screenwash to keep your windscreen clear and clean.