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Reasons Why I have my Car Serviced Regularly and you Should Too

Reasons Why I have my Car Serviced Regularly and you Should Too

*This post was written in collaboration with Calmac Tyres.

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to be able to drive. So when I reached my seventeenth birthday I made it my mission to pass my test as soon as I was able. In the end I was done and dusted within 3 months, I was that determined to get on the road! Being a car owner has a lot more to it that sitting behind a wheel though. Looking after your wheels is an essential part of car ownership and if you fail to do so, the chances are you car will end up failing on you.

I was taught how to complete basic checks and maintenance on my car from a very young age. I come from a family of vehicle enthusiasts and with two older brothers, I had a lot of help and direction when it came to maintaining my car. I then went on to marry someone who is very skilled in the car maintenance department, so over the years I’ve learnt a lot.

Getting your car an MOT –  

MOT stands for Ministry of Transport Test. These tests are to be taken out once a year on cars that are over three years old, to make sure that they safe and roadworthy. To complete the test, mechanics have a checklist of areas to examine on every vehicle. This includes emissions, tyre tread, lights and wiper function to name but a few. If you fail to get your car an MOT then you risk having your car taken away, you also put yourself at risk of a hefty fine.

My car is usually gets a service and an MOT around the same time. I use my car a lot and these days my girls spend a lot of time in it too, so making sure it is working as it should be is paramount. A very important check that is undertaken during an MOT is the state your tyres are in. Not everyone remembers to check their tyres, which can be disastrous – especially if they are too worn to be roadworthy. I’m always checking my tyres!

The importance of car servicing –

There are two kinds of of car servicing available, depending on how many miles you travel in your car on a yearly basis. I you do less than 20,000 miles per annum them it is advisable to get a full service done once a year. If you travel more than 20,000 miles though, then having an interim service halfway through the year is recommended.

What’s included in a full service?

A full service included a wide range of checks on your car, including some part changes that wear over the year:

  • Oil change and filter change.
  • New fuel filters on diesel engines.
  • New spark plugs on petrol engines.
  • Tyre checks.
  • Damage checks on brake cylinders, pipes and hoses.
  • Handbrake checks.
  • Removal of wheels and checks on the brakes.
  • Checks for leaks, wear and damage within the engine.
  • Testing and replacement of brake fluid.

This list is not exhaustive of a full service, but it gives a good idea as to what should be checked on a yearly basis. The mechanic carrying out the servicing should also take your car on a test drive to make sure things are sounding and running smoothly.

What’s included in an interim service?

As I said earlier, if you do a lot of miles in your car then you might also need an interim service to keep your car running as it should be. These half-yearly checks can include:

  • Checks on tyres.
  • Faulty lights.
  • Topping up your water, brake fluid and power steering fluid.

Again, this list is not exhaustive of all the checks that can be completed during an interim service. It does give a good idea of what should be looked at when getting this kind of service done.

Finding the right people to service your car –

It’s so important to make sure to get people you trust to service your car. You can get amazing car servicing from Calmac in Northampton. Centres such as Calmac tyres offer numerous different types of car services such as; diagnostic testing, MOT testing, welding and tyres. The best things about Calmac is that they have all of the latest machinery and technology enabling them to work with all types of cars and vans.

Staying safe on the road should be a priority for every driver. Regular services are the best way to make sure that your car is in tip top condition. If you look after your car, then it will look after you!

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Learning to Drive – Why Getting Behind the Wheel Early is a Good Thing

Learning to Drive – Why Getting Behind the Wheel Early is a Good Thing

*This post was written in collaboration with TrackDays.

 

Ever since I was old enough to understand the concept of driving, I’ve couldn’t wait to get behind the wheel. With parents who have always been interested in cars and two brothers who could drive as soon as their feet could touch the pedals, it was inevitable that I would follow suit. The trouble when I was an early teen, was that there were very few places where I could gain driving experience. It just wasn’t a thing then, so I had to wait until I was old enough to get my provisional license, before I could really get to grips with a car.

As soon as my license came through, I stuck the ‘L’ plates on and was away! My parents sat by my side in the car for hours as I learnt the ropes. In the end I passed my test around three months after my 17th birthday, as I was so determined to get on the road. Even though I had a few hours of lessons from a professional driving instructor, I really believe that it was the hours I spent driving my own car that gave me such confidence on the road.

Getting behind the wheel early –

I know that I would have loved to have driven a car as a teenager, so when I found out about Junior Driving Experiences, I had to write about it. It would have been an absolute dream for me, so I know others would love to have the chance to begin driving sooner than their 17th birthday too. Whether driving is just a means to an end for a person or whether it’s a passion, there are so many benefits to learning to drive as soon as possible. Driving brings independence, freedom and prospects that every person needs in their life.

The benefits of learning to drive –

You’re ready – even if you don’t intend to take your test any time soon, learning to drive sooner rather than later will mean you are ready. You won’t have to worry about learning a new skill at an older age, because you’ll already know what to do. Forewarned is forearmed as they say and it’s always good to feel like you’re one step ahead.

It’s a lifelong skill and one that you will most likely cherish – now we all know people who don’t drive, who actually wish that they could. Don’t put yourself in this situation, you’ll only regret if you don’t do it!

Driving could widen your career prospects – even if you’re too young to have chosen a career at this time, having driving experience can only be a good thing. Imagine how much easier every work situation would be if you’re able to drive!

The longer you leave it, the less likely you are to learn how to drive. So start early and get comfortable with driving now, you won’t regret it and you’ll have heaps of fun along the way! 

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Are your Tyres Road Worthy? It’s Time to #TestYourTreads!

Are your Tyres Road Worthy? It’s Time to #TestYourTreads!

How often do you check your tyres? Do you know what to look for when you do? In our house car safety is paramount. Even more so now that we have two little people in the car with us. That’s why this week we’re teaming up with TyrePlus, to highlight just how important tyre safety is and to share exactly what you should be looking for when it comes to road worthy tyres – it’s time to #TestYourTreads!

 

Photo Credit

 

Checking your tyres –

Having previously worked in a garage, my husband is very car savvy. He takes pride in looking after both of our cars, making sure that they’re safe for our girls to travel in them. After a recent check he found that the tread on my tyres was getting a little worn, so he took it straight to the garage for a set of shiny new wheels! It’s so important to check your tyres regularly, in case you’re a little unsure here are a few things you need to be looking for:

Correct tyre pressure –

If you don’t know what the correct tyre pressure is for your car you should find it in your manual, or by doing a quick google search of the make and model! If your tyres aren’t inflated correctly, the feel of your car can change dramatically. It has a direct effect on how well your car grips to the road, meaning under inflated tyres can put all of your passengers in unnecessary danger.

Did you know that under-inflated tyres can wear out quicker than if they were correctly inflated? Not having enough air in them can really effect how economically your car runs. Making sure they’re at the right pressure will not only increase the safety of your car, but it’ll save you money too!

Tyres looking tired –

As with most things in life, after a while things can begin to look a little tired. Everyday use takes its toll on your tyres and you might find that they get damaged along the way. If your tyres are looking a little worse for wear, it’s probably worth investing in a new set!

Tread depth –

Car tyres have tread on them to help them grip well when the road is wet. The minimum tread depth for cars in the UK is 1.6mm. This has to be consistent around the entire circumference of the tyre and across the middle three-quarters of breadth. If your tyres don’t have enough tread your car isn’t safe for use. Not only that, if your caught with tread below the minimum depth, you could be in for a hefty fine as well as points for each tyre that isn’t road worthy.

 

Photo Credit

Stay safe –

Heading out with tyres that don’t meet the right standards is a sure fire way to put yourself and others in danger. So if there’s only one thing you do today, make it heading outside to check your tyres!

 

TyrePlus have put together this fabulous infographic including vital information you need to know about tyre safety!

 

 

*This is a collaborative post.

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