Currently driving is only permitted for a handful of reasons:
1. To obtain medical supplies or access an appointment
2. To provide care or help vulnerable people
3. Travelling to and from work if you cannot work from home
4. To shop for basic necessities
5. To meet with your support or childcare bubble
For lots of us, that means we’re barely getting behind the wheel. So, here’s what you can do to ensure your vehicle doesn’t suffer unduly.
While owners were given an extension for their MOT tests during the first lockdown in 2020 if expiry was due before 31st July 2020, this isn’t the case for the current lockdown. The Government have confirmed that garages and MOT test centres are an essential service and can remain open for business during this lockdown. Many insurers require that your vehicle has a valid MOT but even if this is not the case, you should ensure that you MOT is carried out before it expires so that it is legal and roadworthy.
The Service departments at Gates across Essex, Hertfordshire and London are open as usual. We are currently taking bookings for MOT on an appointment only basis. To make a booking, simply click the link below or contact your local dealership.
If your car is left stationary, the brake
discs can begin to corrode, which can in turn lead to seizure that can only be
fixed by a mechanic. To prevent this, you can roll your car back and forth
every so often – when it’s safe, of course.
We’ve all faced a flat battery in winter; cold weather is known for draining the energy from it. To avoid this, simply start your vehicle once a week and let it run for 15 minutes or so. This will boost the battery charge, and circulate the oil and fuel, preventing flooding in petrol models. But, remember not to leave your car unattended when it’s switched on!
If your car has been parked for some time and you need to use it soon, it’s worth checking that fluid levels – including engine oil and coolant, brake fluid and screen wash – are all above the minimum recommended levels. Make sure your tyres have sufficient tread depth, as this is particularly important in winter. The tread should be no less than 1.6mm in depth across the central three quarters of the tyre. Check your tyre pressure too, as under-inflated tyres can affect braking performance and fuel efficiency.
At Gates, we offer a Winter Check, priced at £40, where all of these essential checks are carried out by one of our Ford trained technicians. Click here to find out more.
You may not be using your vehicle just now, but you will need to keep your road tax and insurance up to date. Even if you have declared a statutory off-road notification (SORN), it’s worth keeping up with insurance in case of theft or damage while the vehicle is parked.