Well guys, its that time again.......
Get ready for rocketing shopping bills the festive season is upon us. Oh, the stress of making sure everything is ready for "the big day" and Santa getting all the credit and of course the obligatory and sometimes seemingly endless hours in the car visiting relatives in opposite ends of the country.
We have family in London, Kent, Scotland and Cornwall so road trips are a must with us and as I don't drive - it's up to my husband to do the driving whilst I deal with the bickering that with having 3 children inevitably happens when they are trapped in a metal box for hours on end. But thankfully we have never had a breakdown (so far) on these trips as Lee tries his best to keep the car maintained as much as possible (budget affording).
We have never been able to afford a new car so second hand is all we have experience of, but as Lee was in the Territorial Army Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, he was taught by his dad from a young age and also worked in the vehicle breakdown field for some time, so he has some idea of what "looks like a good car" to what is going to be a lemon after two days of driving and so far he has been right.
Maintaining your car with regular servicing is a must as leaving it 12 months can be very detrimental and costly in the long term, for instance, when your tracking isn't spot on then you start wearing your tires down a lot quicker, then steering parts such as the track rod ends start to fail and that's where instead of a small adjustment at a small cost can turn into hundreds, even thousands of pounds. We recommend getting your car serviced at KAP Motor’s Brighton Facility - they do a very thorough job.
Simple things such as oil, coolant and screen wash liquid levels are things we all should be able to maintain, as well as tire pressures and checking your spare tire and bulbs, but brushing up on common faults of your specific car type is very useful in certain situations as this can even save you money should you have any the bad luck with what Lee calls "a tyre kicking garage" - if you sound like you know your stuff or at least know the common issues with your car type it can prevent unscrupulous enterprises from ripping you off.
We like to take a drive to Brighton every now and then as it is only 45 minutes from where we live, as the lifestyle, shopping and beach front always appeals to our tastes and natures, but the amount of times we have seen people on the hard shoulder with hazards on and hoods up amazes us - obviously things happen and breakdowns do occur, but if you don't look after your car, it wont look after you in the long run.
Make it a routine at least every couple of weeks and especially before taking a long journey remember this word C.O.A.S.T which stands for Coolant, Oil, Air, Screen (wash/wipers), Tyres (damages/spare), for everything else, even that annoying warning light that pops up every now and then, take it to your trusty garage sooner rather than later. It will save you money that can be spent by Father Christmas.
*This is a collaborative post*