Summer is just on the horizon and now is the perfect time to get your car summer-ready, says Pieter Niemand, Director of the Motor Industry Workshop Association (MIWA).
“Why wait until you are caught in the first spring rains to realise that your windscreen wipers are old and need to be changed. Get pro-active and check your vehicle now so you are prepared for the weather changes ahead,” says Niemand.
He suggests checking your windscreen wipers, air conditioning unit, oil and tyres. “Windscreen wipers age and perish. It’s important to check your windscreen wipers regularly and not to settle for below-par wipers. Only the edge of the wiper should touch the windscreen – so check whether this is the case with your wipers. Also there shouldn’t be cracks or tears in the blades and the blades should be securely fastened to the wiper. If in doubt go to your local accredited workshop and ask your mechanic to check the blades. Wipers are relatively inexpensive but make all the difference between clear visibility and an accident waiting to happen,” he says.
Niemand also suggests getting your air conditioning unit checked. “Many drivers don’t make use of their air conditioning units during the winter months so there may be a build up of dirt that could block and hamper the performance of the unit.” Along with that a leak could have developed, resulting in low or no pressure, or the unit could be low on refrigerant. “A bad fuse, a wiring problem or broken AC switch might also be to blame so ask your mechanic to check the unit if you suspect there is a problem. It’s well worth getting the unit checked before the summer heat hits,” he suggests.
An oil change and inspection of the state of the vehicles tyres is also an essential.
“Budgeting for a service ahead of the December rush is key,” believes Niemand. “During December there are many other expenses that crop up and the thought of additional expenses at that time for car maintenance can be daunting for car owners. Now is the time to plan a service and budget accordingly.”
He suggests using an accredited aftermarket workshop for your vehicle’s service. “By using an accredited workshop, you can be assured that the work is guaranteed. It may be tempting to opt for a cheaper route, such as a road-side air conditioner repair offer at a reduced rate, but ultimately you may end up paying more for a bad job to be corrected. If you are unsure whether your local workshop is accredited ask to see the accreditation certificate or contact an industry body such as MIWA,” he concludes.