- In this Car Care week, Green Flag has released basic car care advice to motorists
- Research* revealed over half (51 per cent) of drivers can’t change a tyre
- Over a quarter (28 per cent) of motorists don’t know how to check oil and fuel levels
- Over half (51 per cent)** of Brits wait more than two months to fix faults in their car
- 1 in seven (14 per cent) drivers only fix faults when it’s urgent
- Brits are spending £574.50 annually on car repairs
In this Car Care Week, from the 30th September – 6th October 2019, breakdown cover provider Green Flag has uncovered how many UK drivers are failing to perform basic vehicle maintenance, and how much our motors are costing us to repair as a result. Car Care Week aims to educate motorists on the benefits of regular vehicle inspection, maintenance, and repair, so Green Flag has also released basic car care tips to ensure thorough vehicle maintenance.
Where car maintenance tasks are concerned, it has been discovered that a whopping 51 per cent of motorists don’t know how to change a tyre, and similarly, 1 in 5 (20 per cent) don’t know how to check for tyre pressure and pump a tyre. Otherwise, over a quarter (28 per cent) of drivers wouldn’t be confident in checking oil and fluid levels, and over half (53 per cent) wouldn’t know how to replace a light bulb in their car. Meanwhile, only a one In 10 drivers (11 per cent) know how to fix a dent or a windscreen crack.
It has also been discovered how few Brits are addressing problems with their motors efficiently, as a whopping 51 per cent confess they wait more than two months to fix faults with their vehicles. Shockingly, one in 7 (14 per cent) UK drivers report they only fix faults with their car when it’s urgent, such as before a MOT check. Last year alone, of the MOT tests taken nationwide, one third (33 per cent) were fails, and a shocking one in 10 (9 per cent) yielded dangerous results***. As a result, Brits are spending a whopping £574.50* a year on car repairs, despite the fact that 47 per cent of drivers agree that repair costs could have been cheaper if they were addressed sooner.
Lucy Davies at Green Flag, commented: “Green Flag would like to help educate drivers on the on the importance of consistent and timely vehicle maintenance.
“Regular car inspection, maintenance and repair will ensure that future repair costs are minimised, hence we encourage all UK drivers not to underestimate the importance of proper car care”
Green Flag has released the following easy, common sense tips for taking care of your car.
COMMON SENSE TIPS FOR CAR CARE
- Stick to your car’s service schedule
- Carry out basic checks by reading through your car’s handbook
On a daily basis
- Be alert for signs of change, such as the engine running less smoothly, the brakes feeling less positive than usual, or the steering feeling vaguely odd.
- If when you start the car, the engine turns over more slowly than usual, the battery might be at the end of its life. Take it to a garage or fast fit operator; many perform battery checks for free.
- Keep an eye on the tyres. Any cuts, damage or reduction in pressure need urgent attention.
- Be aware of the fuel gauge. An empty tank or putting the wrong fuel into the car are all-too-common causes of breakdown.
- Check tyre pressure, and if necessary adjust them to the correct level shown in the car handbook or sticker inside the fuel flap, or on the door pillar. Don’t forget to check the spare tyre and give all tyres a look over, checking for lumps, splits and cracks.
- Check and top up the windscreen washer bottle, and include an additive to tackle grease and squashed flies in summer, or ice in winter.
- Clean your car, wash the windows and wipe all the lights to keep you safe. Check for any blown bulbs.
- If your car doesn’t have a sealed-for-life battery, check the level in the cells and top up with distilled water as necessary.
- Check the level of oil in the engine and ensure it is between maximum and minimum marks on the dipstick.
- Check for sufficient liquid in the cooling system. Top up as necessary, and include antifreeze in the mixture, in winter and summer. It helps protect against overheating, as well as frost damage.
- Give the car a good wash and polish to keep the paintwork in top condition.
- Watch for the first signs of rust forming and have it treated before it gets worse. Look for signs of water leaks inside. Check tyre tread depths and look for signs of uneven wear, hinting at possible suspension problems.
For more information about car care, visit: www.greenflag.com
*Research conducted on 2,011 drivers, April, 2019, by Censuswide.
**Research conducted on 2,020 drivers, March 2018, Censuswide.
*** FOI request submitted by Green Flag to the DVSA in May, 2019. Vehicles failing MOTs can receive both ‘major’ and ‘dangerous’ results, meaning that figures can add up to greater than the total number of fails.
About Green Flag:
With over 40 years’ experience, Green Flag provides customers with breakdown cover 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Customers have access to a network of breakdown operators across the UK and mainland Europe (Euro Plus cover required).
Green Flag and UK Insurance Limited are both part of Direct Line Insurance Group plc.
Customers can find out more about Green Flag products or get a quote by calling 0345 246 1557, connecting via the Green Flag Rescue Me Application, or visiting www.greenflag.com