Yearly Archives: 2018

Is your car ready for snow?

Posted on December 15, 2018 at 11:05 am

With colder weather hitting many parts of the UK, snow has already started to cover the grounds in some areas. Over the last few weeks, snow has been predicted a number of times and those of us who have been lucky enough to escape it, know that it may be just around the corner. It is vital that you make sure that your car is ready not just for snow but for winter in general. With a lot of grit, mud and water on the roads, it is important that you use to keep your screen wash topped up (ideally that works below freezing). You need to be able to clean your screen regularly to enable you to maintain good vision.
Tyres are another important factor, especially during the winter months. You may find that you need to inflate your tyres when the colder weather hits as this can cause the air in them to shrink down. Be careful though not to overinflate them as this will give you less grip. Ideally, you should have winter tyres fitted during the snowy icy months, but this can be expensive. Often a good all year round tyre will be ok as long as there is plenty of tread left on it, inflated correctly and it is not damaged.

Posted in Cars

Emissions test ‘gaming’ costs motorists thousands in additional fuel costs

Posted on August 30, 2018 at 10:04 am

Anyone with a keen interest in cars will know that it’s rare for a modern vehicle to be able to achieve its published MPG figures under what most of us consider normal driving conditions, and often with some quite considerable variations. Speaking as a regular road tester, it’s something I assess in every vehicle I drive – what does it take to get or beat the published MPG?

Much of this can be put down to the now-defunct NEDC testing system, which was a laboratory based standardised testing system, that perhaps poorly reflected the nature of real-world driving. Or rather, much can be put down to manufacturers response to it. Whilst this is now being replaced as we speak with the more realistic (albeit still laboratory-based) WLTP system, manufacturers have been used to gaming these tests for years.

In the most extreme example, you have the defeat software as used in the Volkswagen emissions scandal, but the system-gaming runs much deeper; manufacturers will test vehicles with overly hard tyres, remove absolutely any unnecessary components, ensure any non-essential electrical loads are disabled, and so-on, all designed to ensure that the machine performs as best as it can in test conditions.

It would be naïve to expect this to end under the new system.


Posted in Cars

Owning your Own Business Vehicle

Posted on May 24, 2018 at 1:54 pm

There are many careers where you will be expected to have your own vehicle. You might be a taxi driver, a delivery driver or someone who works in the community, such as a nurse. For all of these jobs, you will need to have your own transport and means of getting around.

With a job like taxi driving, you can also make money from having a vehicle. In this case, you will need to be very careful about insurance. Make sure you have the correct insurance policy at all times and keep it up to date. If anything changes with your circumstances or your vehicle, you will need to update your insurance company straight away.

It is important to keep you care safe when you use it for your living. Get regular services, keep the MOT up to date and as you car gets older, consider investing in a new one.

Posted in Cars

Automatic or Manual Cars and your Options when Buying

Posted on March 20, 2018 at 11:12 pm

A manual car has a gear stick, which is used to control the gear box of the car. This means the driver will need to change gears up or down as they speed up or reduce their speed. In an automatic car, the car will do all of this for you, so you don’t have to worry about gears at all. Here are some of the ups and downs for each:


  • Most people learn to drive in a manual car, so it feels more natural to drive one.
  • You have more control and can use gears to control braking.
  • You can change gear when you want to control acceleration


  • There is less to think about. Some people feel safer driving a manual car.
  • It could be easier to drive abroad, as you won’t have to think about the gear stick being on the opposite side.
  • It can be useful for people with disabilities, because you don’t need to change gear or press down a clutch.

Posted in Cars