When’s the last time you P.O.W.D.E.R. checked your car? With the beginning of the New Year underway, we’re all trying to embrace better habits for 2014. Taking five minutes to check a few key aspects of your car just once a week, will significantly reduce your chances of unwelcome incidents on the road. There’s no actual powder involved, but this handy acronym will help you to remember the steps! Our P.O.W.D.E.R. tips below:
P – Petrol/Diesel: Ensure you have enough fuel for your journey. Running out of fuel is terribly inconvenient, but also potentially dangerous, particularly on Motorways.
O – Oil: Check via dipstick and top up with oil recommended in your owner’s handbook. Our tip - put in a mug full at a time, check level each time so as you don’t overfill.
W – Water: Coolant and Windscreen washer level. Coolant is a service item. Water should be topped up in the Washer bottle for the windscreens, back and front. Only put windscreen fluid or powder into the washer bottle, NOT washing-up liquid, as it causes sparkle on the glass, can cause eye-fatigue, and can obstruct your view in strong sunlight.
D – Damage: Always do a ‘Lap of Honour’ around your car to check for damage to lenses, tyre walls and wheel rims.
E – Electrics: All lights must be working 24/7. Parking/Side lights, Dipped Beam, Main Beam, Rear lights, Brake Lights, Number Plate ID Lights and Rear Fog light. Check the horn is working too while you’re at it.
R – Rubber: Wipers back and front should always be in tip-top condition. Always replace if frayed or worn, with approved items. Tyres, including your spare/spacesaver or inflation kit should also be checked for ‘Wear ‘n’ Air’. Always inflated tyres to recommended pressures,
If your tyres are under 1.6mm of wear, they are considered worn and un-roadworthy. You should replace as soon as possible with approved size and specification.
All done? You’re ready for the road, happy motoring!
By Tony Toner, BeepBeep.ie Motoring Correspondent.