Winter is here and the weather is changing. We’re going to share a few tips to protect your car and home in winter in South Africa. These tips will help keep your vehicle safe on the roads, make sure your safety measures are in accordance with insurance best-practice advice, and keep your home protected too! Let’s get into it…
Tips to Protect your Car
Prevent water damage
Water damage is one of the biggest threats to not only our homes but also our cars during the winter. If you do not have a garage and keep your car parked outside, make sure you close all windows and doors properly. Also, check for and repair any cracks. Even if your car is under a cover, you should make sure your windows are closed to prevent wind from blowing the rain into your car.
Check your tyres
One of the top hazards of wintertime driving is wet, slippery roads. We highly recommend you get your tyres checked and adjusted accordingly. Driving with faulty tyres or tyres with incorrect inflation is extremely risky and should be checked and solved ASAP!
Check your tyres for the right inflation and adequate tread.
Rainy and icy weather conditions will impact your car’s handling on the road. Drive slowly, smartly and responsibly. It’s very common for insurance providers to see their clients get into minor accidents from sliding on the roads and the driver losing control of the car.
Be sure to slow down on rainy days and keep an eye out for puddles.
Check wipers and chips
Another important factor to consider is your windscreen wipers. Without them, you’ll have a hard time seeing properly with rain droplets all over your window. Make sure your windscreen wipers are fully functional.
Lastly, check for any chips and cracks in your windows. Although you might have had a small chip or crack for ages and nothing has changed, the drop in temperature could cause the crack to spread. This is because most materials, even glass, expand and contract when the temperature fluctuates. So you should get those chips repaired right away before they turn into deeper cracks!
Tips to Protect your Home
Repair leaks to prevent water damage
Check all your windows, ceilings and doors for leaks. If you are aware of any leaks in your house, get them repaired immediately. Water damage to your home and possessions can cost thousands to replace! Better be safe than sorry, and save you and your insurance provider from the stress of dealing with water damage to your property.
Clear gutters and drains
Blocked gutters and drains are a major hazard in all weather conditions. Always ensure your gutters are clear and not blocked with leaves and other debris. If your gutters are blocked up or constricted, you could end up with some serious flooding problems. In warmer weather, leaves and debris in gutters and storm drains are a fire hazard. Always make sure you take the necessary steps to protect your home from damage.
A burst geyser and exposed wiring are common household problems. Get a professional in to check that your geyser element is working correctly and all wiring is properly insulated. Another great tip is to invest in a geyser blanket to help keep the geyser warm and save on electricity.
Trim back all branches that are close to your roof and windows. These branches are a potential threat in strong winds. Make sure you cut back branches and plants that could blow against your roof and windows and cause damage.
With the following tips to protect your car and home in winter, most damage is preventable. Check with your insurance to make sure you know what you are covered for. You can also ask your insurer if there are any extra recommendations/services they can provide for winter protection and safety measures.
To recap: make sure to check your tyres are suitable for the roads, repair any chips/cracks in windows, get a full service done on your car to ensure the battery, oil, wipers, engine, etc. are all working properly and your car isn’t a hazard on the road.
For your home: remember to clear out gutters, repair leaks, check your geyser, trim branches and trees and make sure you have no exposed wiring in and around your house.