In many ways, your van is your most valuable asset. It’s the workhorse you need to get you and your tools to jobs, and it stores them whilst you’re not there. Without it, you simply can’t make a living. Winter is particularly hard on all types of van and special care is essential to keeping them running right; keeping your valuable belongings as safe as possible. Here are some suggestions on how you can prepare and look after your van this winter.
Get it Waxed
Washing your van regularly helps your business and your vehicle look its very best. Maintaining a clean van tells customers you care about your business and serving them, so regular washing of your van is essential. Once it has been washed, a wax can help make it shine even brighter, but wax has a dual purpose during winter. A layer of wax on your van will prevent salt and sand (used to de-ice roads) from sticking to the paint. Rust is also a common problem in areas where ice and snow are common. So, if you live in one of these snowy parts of the country, start the winter with a good layer of wax on your van’s bodywork.
Protecting your van from freezing
You may think there is no way to completely guard against frozen components on your van, but there actually is! Vehicle grade lubricant is regularly sprayed on door hinges and rubber surfaces at car dealerships to help avoid sticking doors and squeaks that can be common during winter. You can use that same option for your van during the winter. Spray lubricant such as copper grease on hinges throughout your vehicle and PTFE spray on all rubber seals.
Keep the fuel tank full
Rising diesel prices can be of some concern, but it is essential that you maintain a full tank during the winter months. Condensation on the interior of your fuel tank can cause rust and potentially damage the interior engine components of your van. Keeping your tank full ensures there are no gaps in which water might accumulate. A low fuel tank can also freeze in extremely cold temperatures and a full tank will take far longer to freeze, so you will not have the added worry about waking up to frozen fuel in the morning.
Cover your van when parked
Not everyone has garage space, so it is important to invest in something to cover your van when you are not using it. Even a tarpaulin cover can offer enough protection to keep excess snow from negatively impacting your van’s paint and rubber components. These covers can be ordered for your specific model and you will find it is much easier and safer to simply remove the cover instead of scraping away ice every morning.
Schedule van maintenance regularly
Maintenance seems like a no-brainer, but unfortunately, many van owners are so busy using their van, they neglect regular maintenance. Regular maintenance ensures components that regularly wear out on a vehicle are kept in check. Oil changes, brake service and checking levels of other fluids within the vehicle are all part of regular van maintenance and it is essential to keep them topped up during the winter to avoid a potential breakdown.
Check your battery
As the weather begins to cool off, you may notice your van is more difficult to start. The starter or alternator on the vehicle might be to blame but more often than not, during winter, it is the battery that needs attention. Batteries can last for many years without any trouble, but a bad battery will almost always rear its ugly head during the winter. A drastic drop in temperature can drain a battery of its power, so to ensure your van will start each and every morning this winter, get your battery tested at a garage. It is a small level of maintenance that will keep things moving smoothly.
Check van locks for wear and lubricate them
A worn or broken lock can go unnoticed in vans as not all doors are used at all times and a parked van is a beacon of light for a prospective thief. Take a little time and check the locks on your van to ensure they are locking appropriately. You may also want to look for any scratches surrounding the lock as this can be an indicator of an unsuccessful attempt at theft. Keep a check on your vans locks and windows this winter to help keep everything secure. Spray PTFE spray into the key hole, and onto both sides of the key and work it and out of the lock quickly. This will free any dirt or grit inside the lock and get it moving nice and smoothly. This should be done monthly in the summer months, but every 2 weeks in the winter, especially on locks on the back doors of the van,
Van Secure wants to help you keep your valuables safe throughout the year and we know that winter can be a particularly difficult time to secure your van properly. Let us help you secure your van today.