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Dublin: 11 °C Friday 21 November, 2014

Rise in winter breakdowns due to increasing amount of older cars, says AA

The motoring association also has some handy tips for keeping your car on the road over the next couple of months.

Image: car breakdown via Shutterstock

WET AND WINDY weather conditions combined with a growing number of older cars on the road prompted an 11 per cent rise last month in the number of motorists contacting the AA due to a breakdown.

Figures released by the motoring association also show a 27 per cent increase in call-outs to motorists with engine problems, 15 per cent increase in motorists with flat batteries, and a rise of 12 per cent in the number of motorists getting flat tyres.

Conor Faughnan, Director of Consumer Affairs at the AA, said that engines are forced to work “much harder in winter”, leading to more break-downs and an increased need for maintenance.

However, he also said that the increase in breakdowns is down to people keeping their cars for longer:

Irish people are hanging on to their present cars for longer these days and there is no doubt that this is why we are seeing more car breakdowns.

“This has been evident all year but it was striking how many car breakdowns happened in the last month that were caused at least in part by cars not being prepared for poor weather.”

While some are keeping their cars for longer, CSO figures last week revealed a 16 per cent increase in the number of new private cars licensed for the first time.

As winter sets in, the AA is advising motorists to keep an eye on the several aspects of their car’s maintenance to avoid running into difficulties:

  • Avoid using worn tyres, as this will lead to a loss of grip in wet or frosty road conditions.
  • Top up your engine’s coolant with anti-freeze.
  • Ensure your windscreen washer fluid is topped up.
  • Oil and break fluid should be topped up as normal.

Read: Volkswagen most popular as new vehicle licenses jump 16 per cent >

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