Flat Tyre Fears – How to Prepare Yourself For Unexpected Car Calamity
Nobody likes a break down. You’re driving along, minding your business and all of a sudden your car stops. Or pops a tyre. Or, even worse, you return to your car after a meeting or appointment and it won’t even start. Nightmare fuel, right? Breakdowns are actually quite common, and their causes can be common too. Yet, with a little forethought and preparation you can actually avoid unexpected car calamities. You don’t have to be an engineering mastermind to follow these simple steps, just read on and take some notes.
Call in an Expert
Before we get to the prevention, let’s look at what to do when you’ve actually broken down. Your first port of call should be to contact a mechanic. If you can’t access a tow truck or don’t have emergency roadside assistance then you can call a mobile mechanic. They’ll come to you with a fully equipped van and nine times out of ten get you back on the road. Once you’re home safe and your car is working again, you may want to find a permanent mechanic. Ask your friends, family and colleagues – chances are someone will know a trustworthy, reliable and reasonably priced mechanic.
Maintain Your Fluids
No, we’re not talking about staying hydrated, although that is very important for your health. Your car needs to keep its fluids up as well. Especially engine oil. Engine oil is like your car’s lifeblood. It keeps its moving parts lubricated and working well. Without enough engine oil your engine can seize and die – and that’s a very expensive replacement.
Newer cars will display warning signs on your dash when the engine oil is running low but older models won’t. So, every few weeks use that dipstick to check the oil levels and keep it topped up. The same applies to coolant – without it you run the risk of your car overheating and breaking down. Keep your coolant topped up. Ditto for power steering fluid.
Drive Your Car Regularly
This tip is for those that own a car but don’t use it often. Your car is like a muscle, it requires a bit of a regular workout or else it will get weak and flaccid. This especially applies to your car battery. Driving your car makes the alternator charge the battery. If you don’t drive your car much then you run the risk of getting a flat battery. So, even if you only need your car once in a blue moon, take it for a fifteen to twenty minute drive every week and avoid the headache of it not starting when you need it.
Look After Your Tyres
Another common cause of car mishaps is worn out tyres. Your tyres bear the brunt of the work. They’re out there, on the road, toiling for you and your car day in and day out. They are prone to wear and tear at a faster rate that the rest of the vehicle. Ensure they remain at optimal pressure. This means pulling into a servo every month or so and checking their pressure. Good pressure means fuel efficiency for your car. Also, have them checked for wear and tear by your mechanic and get a wheel alignment on the regular – or if you hit a large pothole or curb by accident.
If you follow these tips you’ll greatly reduce your chance of a roadside calamity. If you do break down, get a qualified mechanic to inspect your ride. Maintain all of your car’s fluids and it will run smooth. For those who don’t drive often – make it a habit to go for a drive every week to keep that battery charged. Finally, look after your tyres and have them checked for wear and tear regularly. Stay safe on the road!