Although the majority of people enjoy embarking on road trips throughout the summer, sometimes the greatest fun is to be had in the winter. As anyone with a Mercedes M-Class will know, getting out into the world, sometimes during the most adverse weather conditions, can be one of the most thrilling experiences that a car can offer. With that in mind however, what exactly should you do to prepare your car for the journey ahead?
Within the engine
As we all know, winter can bring with it vast amounts of mud. It is important therefore, that before you begin your journey, you clean around the engine, including underneath the hood. This is especially important if you plan on going anywhere near the coast as the salted air will interact with the grunge of the engine and may corrode sensitive wires and materials. Besides this, it is also important to check all of the necessary fluid levels within the engine block including coolant, wiper fluid, oil and battery levels. Most batteries have a three to five-year lifespan, though with maintenance, they can last a little longer. Make sure to check the condition indicator on the window of the battery. A window that shows a green or blue label means that it is in good condition. A red label shows the need for distilled water and a white one means that the battery needs charging.
As it is important to clean under the bonnet of your car, it is equally as important to clean and wax the body of your car to protect your M Class against the winter elements. Again, this is particularly important if you plan on travelling or spending time around coastal areas. Quite possibly one of the most important things to check on your car is the brake pads of the vehicle. Besides of course checking the brake fluid levels, it is also important to make sure that the pads are not worn.
If you find that your front wheels are constantly looking dirty, this could be due to brake dust spat out from your front brake pads. This dust is created from the rotor wearing away at the brake lining; if you see this, it is important that you change your pads as soon as possible. When it comes to tyres, check your tread levels to make sure that they are not only suitable for a long journey, but also of legal tread depth. In the UK, that is 1.6mm. If you find that they are below this depth, then it is probably time to invest in winter tyres anyway. You can purchase tyres relatively cheaply online from stores such as Click on Tyres.
Besides giving the interior of your car a good clean, remember to stow emergency kits, food and blankets in the car just in case you find yourself broken down. While your there, a few components wouldn’t go a miss either. Fan belts and jump leads can be a lifesaver; even if you don’t have to use them for your own vehicle.