Modern cars are expertly designed and made. They adhere to high safety standards which aim to keep you, as well as those around you, safe. There are, however, instances where cars fail. Sometimes this is through no fault of the owner, but often breakdowns can be avoided. Moreover, features that are likely to cause a breakdown can, most of the time, be identified. 

Car Safety Check: How Safe Is Your Car? 

Everytime you set off on a journey, you should aim to perform a car safety check. This is the easiest and quickest way to avoid any accidents, as well as breakdowns. So, how safe is your car? We are going to help you answer that question by providing an insight into car safety checks. 

Why a Routine Car Safety Check Is Important 

How safe is your car? This is a question you should ask yourself when you have not driven your car for a few days or weeks. Ideally though, you should seek to determine the safety of your vehicle every time you set off. On longer journeys, this becomes particularly important. 
Many people may deem a routine car safety check as pedantic, and avoid doing so to save time. Afterall, no one wants to spend 10 minutes assessing their vehicle when they have places to be and people to meet. 
However, having an inspection routine in which you check a few fundamental things is very important. This will not only ensure the safety of you and other road users, but it may help you identify something that could lead to a breakdown. Continue reading below, where we outline some crucial checks that you can perform in no time at all. 

Vehicle Safety Check: What Should I Look For? 

You may be wondering what, exactly, you should be assessing as part of your car safety check. There are a lot of components to a vehicle, and thus there are a lot of opportunities for failure or wear. Some checks that could make up your routine vehicle safety check include: 


Your lights keep you safe. They enable you to see the road clearly, and they make you visible to drivers. Your actions are clear because of your lights, so ensuring they work is a critical safety check. 

Screen (Wash Level) 

If you do not have screen wash in your reservoir, you will be unable to effectively clear dirt and debris from your windscreen. Maintaining your water levels will ensure that you have good visibility, which could be the difference between having an accident and not. 

Tyre Pressure 

Before you set off, we encourage you to walk around your vehicle and check the tyre pressure of each tyre. An underinflated tyre can negatively affect braking distances, and you have significantly less traction. This can easily lead to an accident, so ensure your tyre pressure is correct. 

Tyre Tread 

Did you know if you are stopped by police and your tyre tread is below the legal requirement, you could receive a substantial fine? In the UK, the minimum tread depth is 1.6mm. Anything below this could impact steering, your grip and braking distances. We advise you to check your tread regularly, and ensure you are within the legal threshold. 


Your brakes are one of, if not, the most important safety features in any vehicle. Brakes are used to slow the driver down, and will be the first line of defence in the event of an accident. As part of your pre-departure vehicle safety check, we encourage you to test your brakes. If they do not feel right, it is not worth taking a gamble. 


It is good practice to check your oil level semi-regularly, and top it up when necessary. Oil protects, cools and lubricates your engine. A car with little or no oil is inviting a breakdown, so be sure to check as part of your vehicle safety check. 

Car Safety Check: What To Carry To Improve Vehicle Safety 

As we have now established, a regular vehicle safety check is hugely important. As part of your vehicle safety check, you may wish to ensure you have a few things in the car that will help keep you safe in the event of an emergency. Examples include: a high visibility jacket, a spare tyre, a Jack, a torch and a first aid kit. These can be kept in the boot and out of the way. 
Barrett Lee: The Car Safety Check Expert 
Here at Barrett Lee, we hope the information provided in this article will help keep you, as well as other drivers, safer. Many of the checks discussed in this article are included as part of our car servicing service. To gain expert advice, and have one of our experienced mechanics look over your vehicle, visit the dedicated ‘Servicing’ page. 
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