Finally, the sun is here (and hopefully for a while). Whilst it's most people's favourite season of the year, it does pose some problems when driving. From car maintenance issues to human errors, there's a few things you have to be careful of during these months. Roads are busier in certain areas like airport approaches and tourist hot spots. Staying safe and stress-free is crucial when driving throughout summer, so here are some tips to keep yourself relaxed and as carefree as possible:
Clear skies and sunny rays are infamous for dazzling and temporarily blinding drivers. Glare can be reduced by keeping your window screen clean, dry and completely free of grease or dirt inside and out. Replace worn-out or damaged windscreen wipers. Sunglasses that are non-light reactive are also good at defending against strong glares, however avoid ones that darken considerably in the sun. Sun glare is particularly bad when travelling east in the morning and west in the afternoon so take that into account when planning your next roadtrip!
With the high temperatures comes the deterioration of already-weak points in tyres. This can increase the chance of punctures, especially if your tyres aren't at the optimum pressure. Therefore, a regular check of your tyres for pressure and overall condition is advised.
Summer temperatures can cause cooling system problems, so it's important to check the coolant and cooling systems to ensure there are no issues. Looking for wet, or white marks on the coolant hoses, and listening to the fan when your engine is idle will help determine whether something is wrong.
During the rest of the year, cigarettes are thrown to the ground without problems regarding fire hazards. However, the summer heat can cause the embankments of roads to become dry enough that a cigarette can ignite them. If you are a smoker, do not throw lit cigarettes out of the window as they can spark fires.
Driving when tired
The warm air can make us prone to tiredness and so if you're ever feeling sleepy, don't take to the road without a quick powernap first. If you have no choice, be sure to take short stops where you either have a short nap of 15-20 minutes or else drink strong coffee. Longer journeys need breaks every couple of hours. Don't eat heavy meals before driving and of course, do not consume any alcohol.
In the case where your hay fever is really bad, getting someone else to drive for you is best. Choose medicines that don't cause drowsiness and close windows and vents to reduce the pollen grains in the car. Keep tissues close by and get rid of dust by cleaning mats and carpets regularly.
Things not to worry about
Condensed water from the air conditioning system can cause pools of water underneath your car, so if you see these wet puddles, it's nothing to stressed about. Smoke from air vents is water vapour from the air conditioning unit that hasn't condensed yet. Cars are also known to have less power in summer as since the air is warmer and less dense.
Hopefully these tips will help when driving during the summer months. Here at 123.ie your safety is our top priority and with our free key replacement with comprehensive car insurance, we have you covered every step of the way.