With most car owners working from home or home-schooling at the moment, their car is most probably sitting on the drive the most of the time just now. This is great for saving on fuel costs and environmental factors, however an unused car can cause have some issues when you return to more regular driving.
Here are a few tips to help maintain your car during lockdown and in a safe condition to dive in case of emergencies.
Start your car at least once a week and let it run for 10 – 15 mins. This will help keep your battery charged. (Turning the air con on while you do this will help keep air flowing freely.)
Keep an eye on tyres going flat; sitting too long in the same position can affect your tyres. If you notice a slow puncture, pump your tyres back to the manufacture’s recommended PSI. (More on this on a previous post here.)
Beware of rust! Brakes, valves and cylinders can all become rusty without use which will effect their effectiveness . A quick once around the block every week will help keep parts freed off of rust. Listen out for any knocks, bangs, squeaks or changes in performance. If you hear anything or notice any changes, they could be an indicator that your car may need further TLC from a professional, before it escalates into a bigger, more serious problem for your car.
Unlike lockdown 1, there are no MOT extensions, so if yours is due in the coming weeks or months you will still be required by law to have this carried out. Doing so will help keep you safe and legal in your car, and also means that when restrictions are lifted again your car will be ready. If you are driving without an MOT you could face some hefty fines and more worryingly driving an unsafe car.
If you have any questions or concerns about your car during lockdown, then don’t hesitate to get in touch and we can get you booked in for a Free Vehicle Health Check.
If you’re new to Maitland Motors or haven’t been into us for while, this updated post will give you an idea as to what to expect when you book in with us. Especially as we’ve had to make some changes in the workshop due to Covid restrictions.
When you drop your car off, we now have a Key Drop Off Box where you can leave your keys securely at a safe space that adheres to social distancing. Its just at the office door on your right. We’ll then give them a quick wipe with antibac, label them, and store them in the office while not in use. (We’d really appreciate any large or bulky keyrings being removed as its one less thing to touch.) After you drop your car off, we’ll pop it up on the ramp to or if needs be, take it on a test drive. Our team will be wearing face masks, using seat covers, matts & gloves and wiping down any areas we’ve touched when we’re in your car. From here, we can start the work your car is booked in for, diagnose any issues (noises, bangs, lights) or start further investigation for more in-depth work. If you’re a new customer or we haven’t seen your car in a while, we’ll also give your car a Free Vehicle Health Check.
Next, if your car needs new parts to fix or repair the fault, we’ll only use quality and trusted parts, such as Pagid Brakes and Mann Filters. We find that using trusted manufactures helps to keep your car running as best it can. ( For safety and warranty reasons, we don not fit parts supplied by customers.) If any unforeseen repairs are picked up that means the car is dangerous, such as bald tyres, we will contact you to discuss and advise of any further costs involved. We would only go ahead with additional repairs with your full permission, ensuring that you are fully aware of the work we are carrying out and the costs. You are under no obligation to go through with any works for what ever reason. We can only advise you on repairs, ultimately its your choice if you go ahead with any work.
Once given the go ahead, we will crack on with the job. Repair times vary from job to job and car to car, and if for reasons, such as seized bolts or lost locking wheel nut keys, your job is going to overrun its expected repair time we’ll be sure to let you know. For really big jobs or in-depth investigations that may mean your car is with us for a few days, we do offer a courtesy car (£10 per day) to help minimise the stress of being without a car can cause.
Finally, we’ll take your car on one last test run before calling you when your car is ready collect. When you come in for your car, your invoice and any additional paperwork (new MOT certificate etc.) will be ready for you. Full payment is due at time of collection. Ways you can pay:
over the phone before you collect the car
cash or card in our office
Payment Assist (please let us know before hand if you are planning on paying via Payment Assist so we can get it in place in time for collection. Its a great way to spread the cost of your repairs, find out more here)
via bank transfer before you collect the car. Details are available on request.
You’ll be back on the road again fully aware of the condition of your car, the works carried out and any advisories we’d recommend. We can also keep the old parts to show you exactly why we’ve replaced them.
Additional Covid precautions: When in the office, you aren’t required to wear a facemask but if you have one we’d appreciate you wearing it. Our team will also be wearing them. We have loads on hand sanitiser available, you are more than welcome to use it. Please don’t come into the workshop. If the office is empty, just holler from the front door, we won’t be far. Unfortunately, customers are no longer able to wait for works being carried out in our office, but we do recommend the local cafes on Burntisland High Street. Thanks in advance for your understanding in helping us to keep you and our staff safe.
Points to keep in mind: If you’re booked in for an MOT, have a backup plan in case it fails and MOT repairs are needed. Depending on the repairs and when we can get any parts needed, you may not get your car back the same day. Let us know of any time scales you’d like your car back for, such as school pick up etc, so that we can work our diary around you. Make sure your car has fuel in it so that we can carry out any test drives to diagnose issues or make sure your car is safe.
So, if like the sound of our service, why not book in for our free, no-obligation Health Check and try before you buy. Call the office on 01592 328848, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org