Keeping on top of car maintenance can feel like a chore, but if you don’t take care of them quickly, they could prove dangerous. We’ve looked into some of the most searched car maintenance queries that have the potential to cause an accident if you don’t have them repaired!
1. Low Tyre Pressure
“What should my tyre pressure be?” is searched 36,000 times per year*. Low tyre pressure is dangerous because it can cause a blowout. At low speeds, this can be dangerous, but if you’re driving at high speeds on the motorway when tyre failure occurs, it could be fatal.
Regularly check your tyre pressure, and make sure that you’re aware of the optimal pressure for your specific tyres to reduce the risk of a tyre blowout. Using a vehicle with defective tyres could result in a fine of £2,500 and 3 penalty points per tyre.
2. Low Tyre Tread
There are 20,400 searches per year for “how to check tyre tread”. Low tyre tread is considered so dangerous that it’s illegal for it to be below the recommended levels. Tyres with a low treat, or bald tyres, means that grip on your car is vastly reduced. In wet conditions, your car could be liable to skid or aquaplane even with a small amount of water on the road.
In the UK, tyre tread should be above 1.6mm. Check your tyre tread with the 20p test – insert a 20p into a groove on your tyres. If the outer rim of the coin is visible, this is a sign that your tread is too low. Driving with tyres that don’t meet legal standards could also result in a £2,500 fine and 3 points on your licence per tyre.
3. Dysfunctional Windscreen Wipers
Having a clear view out of your windscreen is incredibly important when driving. Even a small issue with the efficiency of the windscreen wipers, particularly in difficult driving conditions, could greatly affect your reaction time and cause an accident.
5,400 savvy drivers are searching for “how to change windscreen wipers” per year, ensuring that broken or damaged windscreen wipers aren’t affecting their vision while on the road. If your windscreen wipers are considered to be in a dangerous condition, you could receive 3 points on your licence and be fined £2,500.
4. Low Car Oil
Car oil is essential for the car to run. If you don’t have enough oil in the car, it is possible that the car engine will stall or simply turn off. This can happen no matter where you are or how fast you’re going, which can be incredibly dangerous!
If like the 1,200 searches per year you’re wondering “how often should I change my oil?” the answer largely 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 your car may show before then!
Being forced to stop on the road and causing an obstruction through negligence could result in a £100 fine and 3 points on your licence. If your stopping causes a road traffic collision the consequences are far worse – 9 points on your licence and an unlimited fine.
5. Windscreen Scratches
Catching small car maintenance problems before they grow into a more dangerous problem is key. Scratches on your car windscreen may seem harmless, particularly if they’re not in your field of vision, but they can easily crack and become a danger to you and other motorists.
“How to remove scratches from car windscreen” gets 1,200 searches per year and for good reason – you can easily fix windscreen scratches yourself before they develop into a costly windscreen crack.
While you’re unlikely to be fined for a windscreen scratch, if you then drive with a windscreen crack this can be considered a motoring offence as the vehicle is technically in a dangerous condition. This would result in 3 points on your licence and a £2,500 fine.
*Search volume sourced for exact match queries on Ahrefs – average monthly searches multiplied by twelve to calculate annual search volume.Posted 16/02/2022 Back to Blog