‘There is a stigma in our sport that men are the better drivers. People think that, because the men compete in two-man and four-man, they are more versatile and that the women aren’t great drivers’ – Elana Meyers
I think if I were to write a list of things I love to do in order of favourite to least favourite (drinking wine in the sunshine being top of course) I think driving would be somewhere in the bottom third, Somewhere around putting clean clothes away or listening to Ed Sheeran.
I wrote a while ago about an accident I had where I aquaplaned on a wet road and ended up backwards in a ditch which has definitely made me even less keen to get behind the wheel. So much so that Steph and Dave are often threatened to stage an intervention to get me back driving more.
In terms of that accident there were definitely things I could have (sorry, should have done) but make myself safer and thus more confident behind the wheel. That accident has definitely taught me alot about the importance of car maintenance and made me think about the reasons why your car might start to turn against you:
Your tyres aren’t safe
Although I’m sure I skidded on an oily part of the road, I was aware that there were certain areas where I had felt the car skid. That should have been my warning to get them checked out especially as we were heading into cooler weather and more treterous road conditions. e’re also pretty hot on making sure there’s always plenty of air in the tyres, particularly before a long journey. Flat tyres apparently account for 10% of all motorway breakdowns, and I don’t fancy those odds.
You’re being lazy with MoT and Service checks
Seems so obvious right? But it’s so easy, like everything else in life, to let these kinds of things fall to the bottom of your to do list. Before I was married and had my own car rather than a shared one, it always amazed me how quickly those services and MoT’s came round and I was guilty of leaving it as long as possible. Despite MoTs being an annual occurrence it’s incredible how much I buried my head in the sand each time one would come around. Delaying an MoT can be an extremely costly lesson, one which I learnt when I ignored a hole in my exhaust pipe. Had i taken it for it’s MoT on time it would have been no more than £50 however ended up almost 3 times that. And that’s money I could have been spending on shoes.
Your water levels aren’t being kept topped up
The most costly mistake I ever made (and not just with cars, in life!) was when I ignored that fact that my heasters ceased to work in my little Rover 25. I’d suspected something was wrong for a while but just put it down to her being an old car, and again, became reluctant to fork out any money for her. A few weeks later the head gasket blew and cost £500 to get fixed, which by that time was probably more than the car was worth.
You’re not driving safely
Again, sounds obvious but honestly the amount of times I see people smoking, eating, drinking or even putting on make up whilst driving is alarming. The highway code states that you shouldn’t do anything which takes any hands of the wheel and my accident a few years ago taught me the hard way that, that also extends to changing radio stations. Although I absolutely hit a dodgy patch of road when I spun off, it was unfortunately timing that I was also changing stations at the time, which meant I didn’t have chance to correct the over steer. It was a frightening lesson in how easy it can be to lose control and I make a mental note to leave music or radio alone while i’m driving.
So it’s suffice to say i’ve been a bit of a wally in the past when it’s come to car maintenance and i’ve definitely learnt the hard way. The money i’ve needlessly had to fork out due to my own laziness could have paid for a nice holiday and that’s a fact that stings a little.
If you’re concerned about any issues your car might have you can book a car service online at KAP Motor Group.
*This has been a paid partnership with KAP motor group but all views and opinions are my own.