Fully qualified Approved Driving Instructor with over 18 years experience.
Catering for all levels of ability, from complete beginner to Pass Plus.
Tell Me - Where would you find the information for the recommended tyre pressures for this car and how tyre pressures should be checked.
The pressures are given in the vehicle handbook which is kept in the glovebox. Explain that a reliable pressure gauge must be used. It is best to inflate tyres when they are cold, do not forget the spare tyre. Remember to refit valve caps afterwards.
Tell Me - How would you check the tyres to ensure that they have sufficient tread depth and there general condition is safe to use on the road.
The tyres must have a tread depth of at least 1.6mm across the central 3/4 of the width of the tyre and all around the circumference. A visual inspection of both tyre walls should ensure there are no cuts, bulges,or any sign of damage.
Tell Me - How you would check the brakes are working before starting a journey.
Using the brake pedal test the brakes just after moving away. The brake should feel firm and not spongy or slack. Also the car should not pull to one side. If the brakes don't feel firm have them checked by a mechanic urgently.
Tell Me - How you would make sure your head restraint is correctly adjusted so it provides the best protection in the event of a crash.
It should be adjusted so the centre of the head is level with the centre of the restraint, and the back of the head is comfortable.
Tell Me - How you would know if there was a problem with your anti-lock braking system.
A warning light on the dash board illuminates when the ignition is turned on, after a few seconds it should go out. If it remains lit then there is a fault.
When checking for the tyre pressures...
Tyre pressure is either measured in BAR's or PSI (Pounds per Square Inch).
It is usually best to stick to one or the other so that you get used to the figures and dont get confused. The pressures in the car's manual will give the air pressure for the tyres in both scales. Dont check the side of the tyre walls for the correct pressures, that will only tell you the maximum inflation pressure.
Checking the tyre tread and condition...
Tyre tread is very important, it makes a huge difference to the vehicles stopping distances and the police may heavily fine drivers with tread below the legal minimum. Upto £2500 per illegal tyre fitted on the car. If the vehicle if driven with more than one illegal tyre the drivers can even be disqualified in certain circumstances. Also the driver is responsible for checking the condition of the side walls of the tyre. Any sign of damage and the tyre should be immediately replaced, as it may lead to a blow out.
Checking the brakes...
A bit of a trick question, you cant do this without the car in motion. So explain that you would have to drive down the road before checking.
Checking the head restraint...
Simply use the button to adjust the height to the correct level.
The Anti-lock Brake System...
The ABS system helps hard braking by preventing the wheels from locking up and so stops the car from skidding. It shortens the length it takes to stop and gives the driver more control with the steering wheel whilst the car is coming to a full stop.
(See the bottm light in the picture below).