With summer getting into full swing and the school summer holidays just around the corner, we thought we’d give our readers a few handy tips on driving in the summer in extreme weather conditions and busier roads. Whether you’re planning a long or short trip in your car around the UK or abroad, you need to ensure that you and your car are prepared for any problems the summer might bring.
High summer temperatures can cause your car to overheat, causing problems for your cooling systems. You need to consistently check your car’s electric cooling fans, coolant reservoir level and coolant hoses for any problems. Make sure you bring the necessary tools to fix these should anything go wrong.
The hot summer heat can worsen any existing damage to your rubber tyres. Before you set off on your summer journey, you need to ensure that your car tyres are fully pumped up to avoid any punctures or blow-outs. Check the tread and pressure on your car tyres and make sure you bring a spare tyre as well as the necessary toolkit to change a tyre, should it come to that.
Spending long days and evenings on the beach, enjoying ourselves with family and friends means that sometimes car keys are misplaced or water damaged in the sea. Make sure you have a spare car key, and that you have checked the car handbook for an alternative method of entry if you damage your remote control key.
Hayfever can be disruptive at any point during the summer, but it’s particularly dangerous when you’re driving. Make sure you have plenty of medication which does not cause drowsiness and have plenty of tissues in the car. Keep windows up as much as possible to avoid pollen coming in, have sunglasses with you and thoroughly hoover your car regularly to get rid of dust.
Be prepared for sun glare, particular when skies are clear and at sunrise and sunset. Glare can cause discomfort and even cause accidents. Make sure your regularly clean your windscreens, inside and out. Also ensure you have your sunglasses to hand at all times.
To avoid boredom for you and the whole family, make sure you have plenty of in-car activities planned for the journey, such as travel games and film devices. Try and stop every couple of hours to give everyone some fresh air and a break – this will prevent children from becoming more agitated in the long run. You could stop for a picnic or at a fun roadside attraction.
Before you set off, ensure that you check your car’s oil levels, windscreen washer fluids, engine coolant and petrol / diesel levels. Make sure you check and top these up regularly – your car needs fluids as much as you do in summer!
Before setting off, make sure you have planned your journey carefully. Have a map of the area you are driving in and/or satellite navigation to hand in case you do end up off course.
Ensure you have plenty of water and anti-travel sickness medication to hand, in case you or a passenger start to feel ill. Keep windows open for fresh air. You can also purchase acupressure bracelets to prevent travel sickness.
Make sure you regularly check local news and/ or the internet for travel news and updates. This can help you avoid queues and delays and allow you to arrange alternative routes to prevent adding hours onto your journey.
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