The last 15 months in the UK have been unlike any others in recent memory. Practically everyone has had to adjust how they live their lives, which includes how people use cars on a day-to-day basis.
As our daily routines were significantly altered due to the stay at home order imposed by the UK government, we’ve taken a look at the ways in which people have had their relationship with their vehicle changed over the last year or so.
Do people use their cars less now?
This is a continuation of the reduced amount of car usage which has been observed during the last 15 months, as around 66% of people have been working from home. The commute for many people has become from the bedroom to the living room or home office, meaning there are less cars on the road during the usual morning commute hours.
Coupled with the fact that people currently can’t do all the things they previously enjoyed, included going on short breaks away, car usage is down. Even after lockdown lifts, many said they will continue to work from home. This could lead to a permanent reduction of cars on the road if home working negates the main need for a car.
In terms of whether people will switch to using public transport more, it’s too early to tell. Data gather over the last year has shown how usage is down across all forms of transport, especially given how the government warned people away from using public transport as much as possible.
How have the rules of the road changed?
There have been a number of new driving laws and rules introduced over the last year or so which could catch you out. If you’re planning on getting back into your regular routine of commuting to your office by car, these are essential things you will need to know.
If you haven’t been paying attention to these changes which have come into effect, you can find details of the new driving laws and make a note before heading back out onto the open roads.
For those who’d rather buck the home working trend and invest in a new car to make the most of the freedom it can provide, you can find a local car dealer that has your ideal vehicle and get prepped to be back on the road in no time.
Whether you’re looking for Nissan dealers in Northern Ireland to Kia vendors in Wales, you’ll find a local dealership that has exactly what you’re looking for.
Checking your car after it hasn’t been used for a while
The first things you’ll want to take a look at before taking your car out for a spin is your car tax and MOT. The MOT grace period came to an end January this year for the absolute latest valid MOT holders. Make sure you aren’t caught out with an out-of-date MOT or car tax if your car is still on the road and you intend on driving soon.
Car batteries can also let you down if your vehicle has been left idle for an extended period of time. If your car doesn’t have sufficient battery to start your engine, then you’ll need to jumpstart it. This can involve using another driver’s vehicle to get this going or calling out a professional to get you back on the road.
Although your car’s tyres shouldn’t have been affected by being left for so long, you’ll still want to ensure that they’re all resting at the correct tyre pressure. You may have forgotten to check your tread depth when you last drove as well, so be sure to check them all before setting off in case they’re more worn out than you remember.
As your brake have been left idle for so long and exposed to the open air, the brake discs can corrode and rust which can require cleaning. This can occur even quicker if you live near a coastal area due to the salty conditions. Check your car by gently moving your car and see how freely your wheels move. If they’re completely seized up then you this will need tending to before you can drive again.
Just make sure to thoroughly check over your vehicle before taking it on a full journey, otherwise you may be in for a nasty surprise halfway to your destination. But if you’re one of those looking to pick up a new vehicle as the world starts to open back up, there’s likely nothing you’ll need to worry about other than getting a good deal!
Founder Dinis Guarda
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