June 15

How Safe is the Car You’re Driving?

Car Maintenance, Car Safety


Do you know how safe the car that you are driving is?

Picture this scenario: Your car is in a body shop for a couple of months being restored and a very kind friend lends you their ‘spare’ car.

Sounds like a fabulous arrangement doesn’t it? Well maybe the arrangement is not so fabulous if that friend’s car has serious safety defects that are unknown to you and the car owner.

Often we drive our cars and they seem to run fine, so an assumption is made that all is good. There may however, be one or more components that are about to fail, possibly leading to a catastrophic accident.

Can this be prevented? Absolutely: by having a routine safety inspection done once per year. Many parts on a car can be worn and fail suddenly without warning but will be noticed during a safety inspection.

This scenario was recently inspired by a true story: our client brought in a vehicle for a level one maintenance service (oil & filter service and minor inspection) that a very kind friend had lent him for a couple of months.

While inspecting under the car we noted seriously cracked front brake hoses: something that neither the car owner or current driver was aware of. Cracked brake hoses give no warning of an impending failure. When they fail they usual burst suddenly, leaving you with little or no brakes.

There are many other components that also give no warning: loose steering parts are example. The good news is that their condition can be easily confirmed during a safety inspection.

The whole point of this story is: if a vehicle is being driven, you need to be certain that it is a safe car. This applies to both the owner and the driver. There are legal liabilities, not to mention moral obligations and the possible ruining of a friendship should an accident occur or a part breaks that was just about to fail due to old age.

Be sure that if you own a car or are driving a friend’s car that it is safe. An annual safety inspection is not expensive and will make sure that you know that you have a safe car.

About the author 

Bernie Pawlik

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