The COVID-19 pandemic forced us to restrict our movements and stay indoors for safety, bringing our lives to a halt. With nowhere to go, our cars, too, were parked away for days on end. However, during this period, most of us made it a point to check on the insurance of the vehicle and renew the car insurance online. However, prolonged duration of immobility can cause issues to your car’s inner mechanism. And when it is time to use your car again, it is important to know how to restart the vehicle carefully without causing any internal damage to it. And to ensure that you can get protection for your car without moving out of the house, you can buy car insurance online.
Sometimes, even old cars that are not frequently in use need to be handled with care when being restarted. In the case of old cars, you can get car insurance for a 10 -year-old car to protect the vehicle from any damage, and a few essential tips can go a long way in preventing damage caused by suddenly starting the vehicle after a long period of time.
Tips to restart your unused four-wheeler safely:
- Perform a visual inspection on the car:
A visual inspection will include simply checking the different parts of the vehicle and not fixing anything. To visually check the vehicle, you can follow these methods:
- Engine oil level: Before you turn the car on, you should look underneath the vehicle for oil leaks or spills. Since the car was unused for a long time, a spill may have occurred. After checking underneath, you must check the engine oil level by a dipstick test. If the amount of engine oil is not adequate, you must get it filled before taking the car out for a ride.
- Transmission fluid, clutch and brake: As a safety measure, check the brake, clutch and transmission fluid levels. The probability of the fluid level going low is quite unlikely. However, they may be down because of a leak in the system which may go unnoticed, since the car has not been serviced in a long time. For the brake fluid, ensure that the fluid meets the minimum level marking on brake fluid reservoir.
Seek help from a professional garage or mechanic to check the transmission fluid and clutch. Even if there are no leak stains on the floor, get the car checked as a precautionary measure.
- Hose and belts: Conduct a complete check-up of the rubber hoses, AC belt and electrical wires. A rubber hose can harden or break, and the belts tend to slack.
- Coolant level: Check the coolant level visually. Make sure the level of fluid matches the minimum level marked on the coolant reservoir.
- Check the battery power:
As you have not started your car in a long time, the battery’s voltage level may be low. This may not be enough for the starter motor to start the engine. However, the wipers, horn, dashboard lights, etc., may work fine. If you try to start the car with multiple cranks, it can drain out your car’s battery. If the car is manual, you can jump-start the car. You can also use a jumper cable. If all of these methods fail, then consider taking the battery to the nearest mechanic.
- Inspect tyres:
Your tyres may be deflated or underinflated (due to low air pressure) because they haven’t moved in a long time. To check the tyres, you can examine their condition visually. Get a spare tyre or contact your mechanic for assistance before driving the vehicle if the tyre is completely deflated. If the tyre is underinflated, it is recommended not to drive the car as the cuts and cracks may permanently damage the tyre.
- Do not rev if the car starts:
A common mistake many car owners make while starting their car after a long time is to race or rev the engine. If your vehicle starts in the first or second attempt, let it sit still for a minute before accelerating the car. It is essential for fluids like the transmission oil, coolant and engine oil to move through the system, making sure that the car is working smoothly.
Avoid racing the engine to prevent any damage caused to the internal components because of friction. If your vehicle is turbocharged, you must follow this rule as a lack of lubrication will lead to turbo failure.
If you don’t want to disrupt your vehicle’s inner mechanisms, you must be gentle with it if you start it after a long time. To start your vehicle smoothly, you can follow the steps listed above. Even when it comes to driving your car on the road after several months, it is advisable to move carefully as the car as well as the driver may take a while to safely adjust to the speed. Though you can buy car insurance in India to protect your car from accidental damage, the harm caused by forcibly trying to restart an old and unused car can be considered as deliberate damage by several car insurance providers.