It goes without saying that driving can be an expensive business, especially in the capital. London drivers are constantly on the lookout for unique ways to save money and avoid extra charges when out on the road.
In particular, the recent rise in the cost of living has made Londoners all the more keen to avoid unnecessary costs and the last thing anyone needs is a fine for making a simple error. Luckily, there are some simple tips and tricks drivers can use to avoid fines for safety issues with their car.
The car finance experts at CarMoney have revealed the most searched-for car maintenance queries, how to solve them – and how much you could be fined if you don’t.
READ MORE: The little known driving laws you see drivers in London breaking every day
How to change tyre pressure – preventing fines of £2,500
‘What should my tyre pressure be’ is searched by motorists 36,000 times per year. Low tyre pressure is dangerous because it can cause a blowout – which can be fatal at high speeds. Defective tyres could also result in a fine of £2,500 and three penalty points per tyre, so regularly check your tyre pressure and be aware of the optimal pressure for your specific tyre type.
Knowing how to check tyre tread – preventing fines of £2,500
There are 20,400 searches per year for ‘how to check tyre tread’. Driving with tyres that don’t meet the legal standard tread of above 1.6mm can be landed with a fine of £2,500 and three penalty points per tyre. Check your tyre tread with the 20p test – insert a 20p into the groove of the tyre, if the outer rim of the coin is visible, this is a sign that the tread is too low and a new tyre is required.
How to change windscreen wiper blades – preventing fines of £2,500
‘How to change windscreen wipers’ is searched 5,400 times a year. Even a small issue with the efficiency of the windscreen wipers can affect your view of the road and impact reaction time, so always replace broken or damaged wipers as soon as possible to avoid potentially causing an accident in difficult driving conditions.
Changing car oil regularly – preventing fine of £100
‘How often should I change my oil’ receives 1,200 searches per year, and the answer depends on your car’s oil change interval. A good rule of thumb is to change the oil every 3000-5000 miles, but keep a close eye on any warning lights before then. If you’re forced to stop on the road due to engine failure and cause an obstruction, you could be fined £100 and have three points put on your licence.
How to remove car windscreen scratches – preventing £2,500 fine
‘How to remove scratches from car windscreen’ gets 1,200 searches, and for good reason – you can fix windscreen scratches yourself before they develop into a costly windscreen crack, which can result in a £2,500 fine and three points on your licence as it can be considered a motoring offence.
Andrew Marshall, Marketing & Partnerships Manager at CarMoney, told MyLondon: “Keeping on top of car maintenance can feel like a chore, but if you don’t take care of issues quickly, they could prove dangerous. Not only will regular services identify potential early issues, but they could also help you save money and avoid costly repairs further down the line. Always seek professional advice for any vehicle problems that may pose a risk to your safety and that of other road users.”
If you have a story you think we should be covering, feel free to email [email protected]
To keep up-to-date with all the latest London news, sign up to our newsletter here
Do you want to stay up to date with the latest news, views, features and opinion from across the city?
MyLondon’s brilliant newsletter The 12 is absolutely jam packed with all the latest to keep you keep you entertained, informed and uplifted.
You’ll get 12 stories straight to your inbox at around 12pm. It’s the perfect lunchtime read.
And what’s more – it’s FREE!
The MyLondon team tells London stories for Londoners. Our journalists cover all the news you need – from City Hall to your local streets, so you’ll never miss a moment.
Don’t skip a beat and sign up to The 12 newsletter here.