Hit the Road, COVID-19 Ready
We know what we need to do to safeguard ourselves from COVID-19, but have you considered your car? Here is a car’s COVID-19 checklist so you can take it out safely for a spin.
Everyone’s ready to get back to normal since COVID-19 crashed into our lives. Our new normal consists of masks, hand sanitizer, chapped hands from washing so much, and heightened new awareness about health and safety. Just as we treat our bodies with a new sense of care, the same is true for our vehicles. Before you get back on the road to set out on your favorite journeys, get your car COVID-19 with these simple tips!
The Dubai Road Transport Authority (RTA) has recently advised residents to sanitize their cars, tweeting the following missive: “Sterilize your car well before departing on your journey and when you return to ensure your safety and that of your family.”
With the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions lifted and cities returning to normal, people are back on the move. Though the inherent dangers of the pandemic aren’t over yet, we’ve all got to get back to work and resuming our old lives, but it’s imperative that we do it safely. Here is your car’s COVID-19 checklist:
Clean, Sanitise, Disinfect, Repeat
You may have heard this reminder from the media and disregarded it, but sanitizing your car is almost as important as washing your hands. If you drive a lot, your very safety could hinge upon the cleanliness of your car, so sterilize it thoroughly before commencing on any journey to ensure your safety and that of your family.
If you plan to do it yourself with your bottle of disinfectant spray, here is a method to make the process more effective.
Five parts of the vehicle must be sterilized before and after you drive it. Clean the parts that get handled a lot by you and others, such as your steering wheel, interior and exterior door handles, electronic devices, gear stick, and the seat belt. All these high-touch spots need to be cleaned.
Once you have finished disinfecting the car, make sure to wash your hands thoroughly with soap. This boost in personal hygiene is a habit that should be continued even after the COVID-19 pandemic is over.
💡Many car insurance companies are car sanitizing as a complimentary service, so it’s worth asking your agent!
Warm It Up
The importance of working out our bodies is clear. Doctors and fitness trainers urge us to keep our bodies active for a reason: inactivity causes our body to get stiff. For the same reason, our cars require a warm-up too to perform optimally.
Because many of us in the UAE are still working from home, our cars are not being driven to the extent that they are used to being driven. Instead, they’ve been cast aside and parked idly in lots, on the street, in open sandy areas, and exposed to the elements where they can lose their performance. Cars, like human bodies, stay in tip-top shape when they are used and maintained regularly. So, even if you aren’t planning a long trip, get in the car, warm it up, and show it some care. It will thank you with better performance when you are ready to take a trip.
Keep Them Running
The best way to ensure your car is in top shape and ready for the road is to take it out for a spin every once in a while. Your car isn’t like a dog. It doesn’t need to go out every day, but a 15-minute jaunt every seven to ten days will do your car a world of good. Drive your car to the store or to the mall. The moment you see the needle in the temperature gauge rise from below C to between C and H, you’ll know you hit the mark.
Driving once a week will keep the fluids (engine oil, transmission fluid (gear oil), coolant, power steering fluid) in proper circulation and keep the different components well lubricated.
Turn those Tires
Replacing tires is a costly proposition, so it’s best to keep them turning. If the car is left in one place for an extended period without moving, your car’s tires will deteriorate and lose pressure over time.
Ideally, if you know that your car is going to be parked for a long time, you should inflate the tires to the maximum capacity recommended by the manufacturer and check the pressure periodically. Before starting the car, check the pressure again and make sure it’s the correct one for driving.
Give your vehicle the attention it deserves, and it will return you miles of driving pleasure for years to come.