We believe prevention is better than cure here at Maitland Motors, which is especially true when it comes to your vehicle passing its MOT first time or not.
Here are a few easy checks you can do at home before dropping your vehicle in for MOT that could help achieve a first-time pass, avoiding waiting on re-tests and repairs.
Checks can include,
Is there water for your window screens?
Are your levels inc oil topped up to the correct level?
Do your wipers work correctly and keep the windows clean and clear?
Do all your bulbs work? (Inc indicators and fog light?)
How are your tyres looking? When was the last time you had them replaced? Are they inflated to the correct pressure?
Are all your seatbelts working and assessable?
Are there any warning lights illuminated on the dash?
Check your mirrors. Is there a clear view of the roads behind and around you?
How do your brakes feel? Do you hear any noises while braking? Are they less reactive than they once were?
If you do spot or feel that something might contribute to your vehicle failing, getting it booked in or making us aware of it before testing means our techs can address it quickly and efficiently. Also, you are without your vehicle for as short a time as possible and have a better idea of any costs involved beforehand.
If you’re unsure about doing this at home, we’d advise booking in for a Free Pre-MOT. Our trained and qualified techs can do it for you. Call or leave a comment below for more info or to book in here at Maitland Motors.
We hope you enjoy reading our blog and find it as a source of advice, hints and tips and more importantly an insight to behind the scenes of our garage. Being open and honest with our customers is very important to us and we feel that the more you know about car care and maintenance the better for every car that comes to us. That being said, there is always room for improvement, so is there anything you’d like to see more or less of on the blog? Do you have any car related questions that we could turn into a post? We’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas, just leave them in the comments below or send us an email.
Thanks to all our readers and customers who have taken the time to read our blog over the past year.
With the wet and snowy driving conditions lately, our window wipers have probably been working over time (that’s when we are actually in our cars at the moment). Its really easy to just run out the car without turning them off and leaving where ever they happen to be on the window. Doing so helps to ensure they don’t freeze to the window screen. If this happens, the motor will try and move them which in turn can damage the blades fuses and the motor itself. So be sure to take a few seconds to turn off your wipers and see that they are in the start position.
This time of year with all the salt and muck on the road, you’ve probably already noticed your windscreen is getting dirtier quicker. Therefore it’s more important than normal to ensure your screen wash levels and dilution are at optimum levels for your make and model of car.
Ensuring this will allow you to clean your windscreen more regularly and with better effect, keeping a clear view of the road ahead. Screen wash and other levels are advised to be checked weekly, but at this time of year with more use, we advise checking/ topping up every couple of days. We also advise keeping a bottle of water in your car in case of emergencies. You’ll find the screen wash by popping your bonnet and looking for a cap with a symbol that looks like the image below. You can also double check in your owners manual which will show you exactly where it’s located.
Normal dilution of screen wash is approximately 50/50 between the screen wash soliton in the bottle and normal water, although with colder months ahead, we recommend a stronger mix of approximately 75/25 screen wash to water. This can help prevention of the screen wash freezing in the bottle, pipes and jets. We strongly discourage the use of boiling water on cold mornings when the windscreen is frozen as the extreme change in temperature can cause the glass to crack.
If you have any questions or concerns about using screen wash or topping up your levels, then just leave a comment below or call us in the office.
The clocks changing means we’ll be driving a lot more in the dark, along with winter weather on the way, now is a good time to give your car a check over. We’ve put together a few easy checks you can do at home to help make sure your car is safe and ready for adverse driving conditions.
Lights Ask someone to check that all your lights are working as you turn each one on and off including your indicators, headlights and brake lights. Replacing bulbs is quick and cheap but essential in keeping you and other drivers safe. We have a #tipthursday with more details.
Brakes Check your brake fluid levels. If it’s low, top it up asap as this will affect the efficiency and safety of your brakes. Also, check your car’s manual to see when/if a brake fluid change is due. Visually inspect your brake discs. If there is a lot of corrosion, this can be a sign its time to replace them. We do advise as good general car maintenance to replace your discs & pads every 2 years. Any noises, judders, or sudden changes while driving may mean your brakes are needing to be checked over and there could be an issue with them.
Tyres Give your tyres a good look over and inspect for any cracks, tears, bulges and wear. Ensure the tyre pressure is correct for your car, we have more on this here. Tyres that are in poor condition can affect your handling of the car, stopping distance and can make your car unsafe to drive.
Wipers & Windows Checking your wipers and windows is easy. (You can find out more here.) Check your windows for any cracks and chips, as these can impact the safety of the glass. You can also check your wipers yourself by lifting them away from the window, inspecting them for any cracks, tears or nicks in the rubber.
If you have checked anything on your car and are concerned about it, then we can investigate further with our Free Vehicle Health Check. From there, we can advise of any repairs or parts needed to ensure your car is winter-ready and safe. We always say prevention is better than cure, so nipping issues in the bud as soon as you can will also help save time and money. Leave a comment below or call the office for more details.
This is a really easy one all of us can do in just a few minuets every few weeks. Check your windows and wipers regularly, especially your front and rear windows looking for any cracks or chips. If you do find anything, most insurance companies will replace your windscreens as part of your policy, so be sure to give them a ring. We’ve all seen the adverts, a damaged windscreen can be fatal.
You can also check your wipers easily yourself by lifting them away from the window, inspecting them for any cracks, tears or nicks in the rubber. Any damage will stop them from working as well as they should and will make diving in poor weather conditions more difficult. If you do spot any damage, you can go ahead and replace them yourself, though it can be a bit fiddly.
These are really easy checks you can do at home, especially as we approach the winter months, but any questions regarding your windows or wipers leave us a comment below or call the office.
Have a good look at your windows often, especially your front and rear windows to make sure there aren’t any cracks or chips that may have appeared over the harsh winter months. If there is damage, most insurance companies will replace your windscreens as part of your policy at no extra cost to you. Damaged window screens can be fatal. Also, take the time to check your window wipers by lifting them and inspecting for any cracks, tears or nicks on the rubber. The damage will stop them from working as well as they should and can make driving in adverse conditions even more difficult. If you do see any damage, you can easily replace them at home though it can be a bit fiddly. If you need any help with this pop into the workshop or gives us a phone, we’re only too happy to help.