Pre­pare now so win­ter doesn’t catch you out

Macclesfield Express - - YOUR PICTURES -

MAKE way for the hats, scarves and wellies be­cause win­ter is on its way. The tem­per­a­ture is drop­ping, re­mind­ing us to make sure we have our de-icers ready.

Here are some tips to pre­pare mo­tor users for the win­ter from IAM Road­S­mart’s head of driv­ing and rid­ing stan­dards Richard Glad­man.

No bob­ble heads. Keep the wind­screen clear. Try to get scratches, abra­sions and chips fixed as colder tem­per­a­tures can worsen the dam­age.

Keep the wind­screen washer topped up. Use a more con­cen­trated screen wash mix to en­sure it doesn’t freeze in ac­tion.

Search in the garage for last year’s de-ic­ing spray, or bet­ter still in­vest in a new one.

Check your tyres. 1.6mm may be the le­gal limit but any­thing un­der 3mm will see a po­ten­tial fall off in grip and brak­ing per­for­mance.

If long-term cold weather is fore­cast and you can af­ford it, in­vest in a set of win­ter tyres ap­proved by your car man­u­fac­turer. Don’t fol­low ur­ban driver myths of re­duc­ing the tyre pres­sure to get more grip – it sim­ply doesn’t work.

Set up a pre-win­ter check list. List things that need to be checked such as the car bat­tery, bulbs, wiper blades and electrics. You don’t want to be stranded in a cold car in the mid­dle of night wait­ing for the re­cov­ery team to get you up and run­ning again.

Dress ap­pro­pri­ately for the weather. It may be sur­pris­ing but too many driv­ers dress based on a work­ing car heater. If it breaks or you are stranded you can eas­ily be caught cold.

Start to plan for the re­ally bad weather with a sur­vival kit in the boot. Spare clothes, a torch, mo­bile phone charger, some emer­gency ra­tions such as water and choco­late and a tow rope and shovel to help your­self and oth­ers.

Richard said: “Win­ter is un­pre­dictable but high­way au­thor­i­ties are al­ready plan­ning for it by build­ing up their salt stocks and get­ting the snow clear­ing equip­ment out of stor­age.

“If they are get­ting ready then why shouldn’t you? With a lit­tle bit of prepa­ra­tion you can avoid get­ting stuck and ad­ding to the prob­lems that bad weather can bring.”

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