If your car’s new it can be tempting to test out the acceleration, braking distance and performance, but this isn’t good for your car and you need to break it in. Try not to drive over 50mph (80 km/h) for the first 1,000 miles, and avoid intense acceleration and heavy loads which could put pressure on the car.
Use the right fuel
This sounds obvious, but using the wrong fuel is quite common, especially if you have a new vehicle or are driving someone else’s car, and can cause serious damage to the engine. If you do fill up with the wrong fuel, don’t start the car.
Car Insurance from John Lewis Finance includes Misfuelling Cover - call 0345 610 0360 and we’ll send a vehicle to drain your car and give you enough fuel to get you moving (10 litres).
If you’re still worried, you can buy FuelSure Diesel Fuel caps to help prevent this error.
Try to park in the shade. This will not only stop your car feeling like an oven (so you won’t wear the battery down by putting on the air conditioning), but it also prevents damage from UV rays and saves fuel, as less will evaporate in the heat. As shaded areas usually go quickly, buy a good quality windshield to keep your car cool.
Don’t ignore chips
Driving along the motorway sends all kinds of debris flying at our windscreen and sometimes this leads to it getting chipped. While this is annoying, the damage is often so slight that people ignore it. But if a chip is left, it could become a crack and your whole windscreen will need replacing, so if you notice a chip, get it fixed.
With our Car Insurance, windscreen repair is free and won’t affect your No Claims Discount (whereas a new windscreen will).
Simply call 0345 610 0361 (lines open 24 hours a day).
Clear the garage
If your garage is full of bicycles, surfboards and gardening tools, it’s time to declutter it and use it for your car. Not only does parking in a garage deter thieves, it also keeps your car in good condition. Garages keep your car cool in summer and warm in winter, which also saves you turning the heating or air conditioning on full blast when you first get into your vehicle.
Clean up properly
Grime and slush on the underside of a car lead to rust, particularly when the temperatures are constantly rising and falling. A thorough wash will remove all the sand and grit from your car and help to avoid rust, so make sure you do or have this done regularly.
Look after the tyres
Front tyres get worn quicker, so alternate them after 6,000 miles to ensure even wear. Make sure tyres are correctly inflated as over-inflated tyres wear out sooner and use more fuel. If you’re buying a new car and don’t want to invest in new tyres for your current vehicle, ask your local garage about second-hand tyres.
Top up regularly
Check the oil, water and coolant regularly, and refill and replace when necessary. You should also regularly change (or ask someone to change) the filters in your car, as these will be full of dust and dirt which could affect the performance of your vehicle.
Get a regular service
If your car fails its MOT it causes a lot of hassle and a hefty bill. Having your car regularly serviced will help you become aware of potential problems with your car early on. It’s also worth having a service shortly before an MOT so that you can deal with any issues beforehand, and saves you being without a car for longer than is necessary.
Keep the lights clear
If you’re driving at night, seeing and being seen are crucial. Before each journey, wipe your headlights to get rid of dirt and grime from the last drive, then turn your lights on and walk around your car to check no bulbs have gone. Make sure that your wiper blades are working and that you have enough fluid so that you can clean the windscreen easily.
Keep it safe
When not in use - keep your car locked, close the windows and shut the sunroof.
Park somewhere well lit and near other cars.
Don’t leave valuables in plain sight and clear satnav suction cup marks off your windscreen.
Don’t leave the engine running when you’re not in it.
Install a steering wheel lock, immobiliser, car alarm and vehicle tracking system.
Don’t keep your car registration documents in the car.
If your car is broken into or stolen, Car Insurance from John Lewis Finance provides up to £250 for personal possessions stolen from your car, as well as up to £25,000 in legal aid if you’re a victim of vehicle identity theft.
If you have our Comprehensive Car Insurance policy (or Third party, Fire and Theft), we’ll also cover the cost of replacing your stolen car or the price of repairing your vehicle if it was damaged by a break in.
Being involved in a car accident is always a shock and can be quite upsetting, but having the right insurance can make the whole process much easier and save you added stress and worry.
John Lewis plc is an appointed representative (Financial Conduct Authority number 416011) of Ageas Retail Limited. John Lewis Car Insurance is provided by Ageas Retail Limited (No1324965). Registered office: Ageas House, Hampshire Corporate Park, Templars Way, Eastleigh, Hampshire, SO53 3YA. Ageas Retail Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (number 312468). Ageas Retail Limited is a sister company of Ageas Insurance Limited.
John Lewis Finance and John Lewis Insurance are trading names of John Lewis plc. Registered office: 171 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5NN. Registered in England (Registered Company Number 233462). John Lewis plc is an appointed representative of a panel of carefully chosen partners to offer a full range of insurance products and services via John Lewis Finance (Financial Conduct Authority number 416011).