Five Important Car Safety Checks

Five important car safety checks you should regularly carry out

DO NOT leave your road safety to chance!

Car safety check

In South Africa, we rely heavily on our cars. As a result, we often take them for granted, which can be a very dangerous thing to do.

When we get into our car, we almost expect it to work in our favour, oblivious to the fact that some things require constant attention and care.

Yes, your yearly service is vital, but you should not purely leave the running efficiency and safety of your car to that annual visit to the mechanic.

Your car needs to be looked after - not just for your safety, but for the other people on the road, so here are five important checks you can do regularly to ensure a safe journey:

NB: If you are not comfortable checking out your car, please ask a friend or family member to help. Do not just ignore it.

- Oil Check

Your engine is the heart of your car. Just like blood flows through the heart to keep it functioning, oil flows through the engine. If your oil levels drop, your engine will start to deteriorate. This is most certainly something you don't want to happen. All you need to do is pop the hood, take a piece of kitchen towel, and remove the dipstick from the oil compartment. Check that the oil is above the marking on the dipstick, and you are good to go. If it is low, then it is important to top up your oil with the correct grade and brand.

- Battery

While you are under the hood, ensure that your battery is connected properly. A loose battery terminal could damage the internal computer of your car and run you into huge bills at the auto-electrician. Also make sure that your battery is firmly secure in its holder. If your car struggles to turn on, it is more than likely a battery issue. If everything is connected and firmly in place, and this still happens, take your battery to be tested.

- Radiator Water

The worst nightmare of any driver is seeing smoke coming out from under the hood. This often happens when the engine does not receive sufficient water to cool it down. Constantly make sure that the radiator water is at the required levels - this is usually illustrated on the container under the hood. This is vital to the smooth running of your car, so check this often.

- Headlights and Taillights

You wouldn't play a contact sport in the dark, so why would you drive around at night without functioning car lights? Constantly check both front and rear lights to ensure that people can see you on the road. Also constantly check your brake lights and indicator lights. You need to be visible on the road - your life and the lives of those around you depend on it.

- Tyres

The tyres on your car are what keep you moving, and are the only contact between your car and the road. Driving with damaged or worn tyres is a disaster waiting to happen. You will either suffer a blow-out or you will skid around in wet conditions. Constantly check the tread on your tyres and inspect them for signs of deflation or wear. Have your tyres checked at a petrol station regularly too. Please do this, it is so important!

Once you have carried out all of the above checks, please also make sure you have the required equipment to change your tyre if needs be. All of that information can be found HERE.

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