5 vital ways to stay safe when driving in warm weather
The sun has finally got his hat on, the days are getting longer, the weather is getting warmer, so you might already be starting to think about heading off on a summer road trip. And if you’re tempted by a UK ‘staycation’ - which have become steadily more popular in recent years - then you’re likely to find yourself driving a reasonable distance to get there.
Some cars are better equipped to handle those types of journeys than others - so if you’re wondering about the size or fuel efficiency of your car, why not rent a vehicle instead? We’ve got some great deals on minibus hire and car hire here at Intack Self Drive, and all at the very best prices. What’s more, with our fantastic Flexi-hire scheme, you can hire a vehicle for a period of 28 days plus, making it the perfect option for anyone look to enjoy a nice long break!
Now, there’s no question that winter is the most dangerous season for driving, when the roads are at their wettest and iciest, but the warm weather comes with its own set of risks and challenges too. Here are just a few tips we’ve put together to help you stay safe when driving in warm weather!
Plan your route
Sunny weather almost always means an increase in traffic, especially on roads that head toward the coast. Don’t get stuck in the summer time traffic - take some time to assess your route and check the weather where you’re going. There’s nothing worse than being stuck in a car on a warm day - you can easily become dehydrated and tired from the punishing heat, and neither of these are ideal conditions for safe driving!
Check your tyre pressure
At this time of year, you can be sure that as well as hot car interiors, you’ll also be in for your fair share of hot roads as well. Extra heat on the roads can weaken your car tyres, and increase the chances of a puncture. This is especially true if your tyres are under-inflated or damaged, which is why it’s vital that you check your tyres before you set off on a long journey. Nobody wants a blowout at the beach!
Plus, over or under-inflated tyres aren’t just a safety hazard, they also take a massive toll on your fuel consumption. Research has shown that if tyres are under-inflated by 20% (around 6psi), they can use up to 10% more fuel. That’s money down the drain that you could be spending on your holiday!
We check all the relevant safety features of all our vehicles before we rent them out, so you can rest assured that we’ve checked your vehicle’s tyres for any signs of wear or under inflation before we hand you the keys.
Reduce sun glare
One of the most common causes of accidents on the road in the summer is impaired vision due to sun glare. Be mindful of the cleanliness of your windscreen, as dirt can intensify the effect of sun glare. So, before you set off on your travels, make sure to clean your windscreen and ensure that your washer fluid is topped up. If the sun is shining brightly, we recommend utilising your sun visor to reduce the amount of glare that gets through to your eyes, as well as investing in a good pair of sunglasses to further protect them.
We make sure that all our vehicles are topped up with screen wash, oil, brake fluid and coolant, so that you can keep your eyes on the road during your holiday, instead on your fluid levels!
Prevent your car from overheating
Your engine will get extremely warm in the summer due to the added pressure put on its cooling system. This added heat also adds to the likelihood that your car might suffer a breakdown. When it comes to overheating, prevention is far better than cure, because by the time you realise your engine has overheated, it’s usually too late.
To prevent overheating, make sure that you’re topped up on coolant fluid, and ensure that you check that your coolant reservoir hasn’t suffered any visible damage. If your vehicle doesn’t feature any stop-start technology, it’s also worth turning your engine off if you find yourself in standstill traffic. It’s a small adjustment, but little things can make all the difference when trying to avoid overheating.
As we’ve mentioned above - keep in mind that we top up all our vehicles with coolant before we hire them out, so you don’t have to worry about the risk of overheating!
Pack a summer survival kit
Hydration is the key in the summer for keeping yourself in a fit state to drive. If you’re on a long journey, make sure you take plenty of fluid with you for both yourself and your passengers, as dehydration can lead to drowsiness, and in extreme cases make you delirious. If you feel yourself getting tired and weak behind the wheel, it’s generally advised that you pull over somewhere to rest and get a drink.
A few snacks won’t go amiss either! (Preferably ones that won’t melt in the sun) and as an added tip, we’d recommend getting your hands on an insulated bottle that will keep your drink cool throughout your journey. Trust us, you’ll be grateful for it.
Those are just a few of our general tips - depending on where you’re going, you might well have one or two of your own! Whatever your intended destination this year, you can always rely on us to have a vehicle that gets you there. We’ve got almost half a century of van, car and minibus hire experience under our belt here at Intack, and we’re always here to help. You can rely on us to provide you with fantastic deals on daily, weekly, and short hire services. Ready to get started? You can browse the best van hire deals right here on our site, or give us a call on 01254 57811!