Car

7 basic car maintenance tips for lockdown


During the COVID-19 lockdown, whilst some of us may be enjoying the reduced amount of time we spend on the road and saving the money we normally spend on fuel, have you given some thought to your car? Just like us, if your car is left sitting around for too long, it may have difficulty getting back into the swing of things when lockdown is over.

Endsleigh are proud partners of the RAC, and their team has been putting together some useful information to help drivers keep their cars roadworthy whilst they're at a standstill. Here is your car maintenance checklist for lockdown.

1. Look after your car’s tyres


What can happen?

Surprisingly, your car’s tyres can still lose pressure if your car isn’t being used. They can even develop something called ‘flat spots’ if they’re stationary for a while.

What can I do?

Ensuring your tyres always have the advised level of pressure is really important. You can normally check your tyre pressures at your local fuel station, but to aid social distancing, you may like to purchase your own pressure monitor to keep at home. Also, if your car isn’t being used, the RAC suggest rolling it occasionally (needless to say, carefully) to make sure tyres are maintaining their shape.

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2. Take measures to avoid a flat battery


What can happen?

If your car is only used for short trips, or isn’t used in a while, the battery doesn’t get fully charged. This can lead to an unpleasant surprise the next time you try to use your car and a frantic search for some jump leads!

What can I do?

It’s really important to look after your battery’s health if your car isn’t being used much. You can use a car battery conditioner (or trickle charger) which should prevent the “energy-sapping components” from using all your battery. It’s worth noting that these measures may not be a good idea if your car is parked away from your home. This is due to the involvement of long wires and potential tripping hazards.

Things to avoid

It’s really important to avoid doing things that could flatten your battery quicker than normal. You may be surprised by some of these:

• Avoid frequent short car trips. If you have more than one car, take turns taking them to the supermarket.
• Avoid turning your car on and off again
• Avoid keeping your dash cam plugged in

3. Conduct a quick fluid top up


What can happen?

Moisture can develop in your fuel tank and lead to condensation and rust.

What can I do?

Top up your fuel to try and prevent this from happening. You can also purchase some fuel stabiliser which will make it last longer.

You can spend some time checking other fluid levels too. Topping up things like engine oil, coolant and windscreen wash can help make sure you hit the ground running once things go back to normal.

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4. Park safely


If you’re working from home during lockdown, or you’re self-isolating due to medical reasons, your car is probably going to remain in one place for some time. For this reason, making sure it’s parked in a safe place is a good idea. A locked garage would be the best and most secure choice. If this isn’t doable, try and find a space which is shaded and is well-lit come night time.

You could even use a cover for your car, but make sure it isn’t hiding any parking permits.

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5. Conduct a bulb check


What can happen?

If you’re found to be driving without properly working lights, you could be stopped and prosecuted – even in lockdown.

What can I do?

Stocking up on light bulbs for your car is a good idea to make sure that if one of your bulbs stops working, you can replace it instantly.

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6. Give your car some TLC


If you’ve found yourself saying “I need to wash the car” all too often over the last few months (or even, years!), you’re not alone. With things to do and time being so precious, it can be hard to fit time in your diary to clean the car or carry out common car maintenance.

If you’re stuck for ways to keep busy during lockdown, why not create a list of all the things you normally don’t get time to do? Things like cleaning your car! Giving it some TLC will make driving even more enjoyable once lockdown is over.

Plus, did you know that cleaning your car can have other benefits? Waxing your car can prevent damage from poor weather/birds etc. You can stop corrosion to your tyres by removing mud/grease and so on. And more importantly, you can try and stop the production of unwanted bacteria in your vehicle.

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7. Start planning cover


Although MOT extensions have been pushed back due to the coronavirus, you’ll still need to keep up to date with other car requirements such as insurance and tax. With your car being off the road for a little while, it’s probably a wise decision to keep up to date with your breakdown cover too.

Now that you have the time, take a few moments to start planning for your next car insurance and breakdown cover quote. How companies treat you is important, take note of their reaction to COVID-19 and how they’ve been helping their customers. Thinking about whether companies have your best interests at heart is an important factor in any purchase.

In case you didn’t know, when you take out a car insurance policy with Endsleigh, you can add RAC breakdown cover onto your policy. This makes it super easy when it’s time to renew, because they both have the same renewal dates and are under one roof.

To learn more about Endsleigh’s car insurance policies and get a quote within minutes, click here.


This post was contributed by RAC. The RAC is one of the UK's most progressive motoring organisations, providing services for both private and business motorists and are committed to making motoring easier, safer, more affordable and more enjoyable for drivers and road users.
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