Having a vehicle safety check every year is an important way to check on vehicle wear and tear between service appointments. A vehicle safety check can give you the peace of mind that your vehicle continues to be roadworthy and reduces the risk of breakdown and unexpected costs. There are a number of safety problems that can crop up, especially those associated with seasonal changes, and these can apply to your vehicle whether it is new or second hand.
Checking the condition of your tyres
It is reported, that one-fifth of the cars on the road have illegal tyres that are too dangerous to be driving on. “Thread-worn” tyres affect your vehicle’s ability to brake and support its own weight. Tyre quality including tyre pressure also affects noise emission and the amount of fuel your vehicle consumes. The thread depth of each of your tyres, including your spare, can be checked during a vehicle safety check, ensuring that the ridges between your tyre threads meet the legal minimum of 1.6mm across the circumference and continuously along 75% of the centre.
Regularly checking your tyres could protect you from expensive fines and penalty points on your license.
Prevent a flat battery
One of the most common reasons that vehicles breakdown is due to flat batteries. It is also the number one reason that recovery vehicle services are called out. A flat battery can seem to come out of nowhere and can happen for many reasons including cold weather and the age of the battery. Vehicle safety checks will test the charge on your battery and evaluate its overall condition including the state of terminals and mountings. This can save the frustration and unexpected cost of needing to tow your vehicle if it breaks down in traffic or of having to buy a battery at short notice.
Maintain your braking system
Your braking system is the most important part of car safety. Regularly checking your brakes also promotes the longevity of your vehicle. Worn brake pads affect brake rotors and damage to these, costs more in both time and labour. Don’t wait until your brakes are noisy to have them checked. Braking performance changes over time and regular vehicle safety checks can ensure that your pads, discs, hoses and the other parts of your braking system are kept in good condition.
A good exhaust system could last for at least ten years but during that time there are problems that can arise that undermine the reliability of your vehicle. During the cold weather months, a lot of water and corrosive chemicals are produced when you start up your vehicle. These can lead to small holes that cause unburnt fuel to ignite as it passes through the exhaust. These explosions can eventually be powerful enough to split the silencer open from the inside. You can check for corrosion during a vehicle safety check and ensure among other things, that gas isn’t leaking from the flange joints and pipe connections