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Can breakdowns be prevented?

For most women the thought of breaking down alone especially at night or in a strange place is their greatest concern; therefore, RoadDriver strongly advises women to completely familiarise themselves with their vehicle. (See manufacturer's handbook) We also urge you to gain a basic knowledge of what is needed to maintain your car on a daily basis which will help lessen the chances of a breakdown.

To give peace of mind and help to lone female drivers, RoadDriver recommends women join one of the National Breakdown Recovery Services. Membership will ensure a lone female driver gets home safe and well no matter what time of day or night.

Can breakdowns be prevented?

Not altogether, but you can reduce the chances of breakdowns by following a few simple car maintenance procedures.

Take control! Don't be a shrinking violet; its your car so take the time to learn how it works. Read the manufacturers handbook on how to safely run and maintain your car. If the handbook is missing or inadequate ask your local dealership for a new one or buy a Haynes manual for your make and model from a car accessories store or direct from www.haynes.com


  • Find out where your hazard warning light switch is in the car.
  • Locate where the spare tyre is kept and how to release it if necessary.
  • Find where the car jack is housed.
  • Wheel brace - Don't rely on the one that came with the car, buy an extendible long arm type which is much easier to use and needs less strength.
  • Practice, Practice, Practice changing a wheel at home on level ground. Do not wait for a puncture to be the first time you use a jack or change a wheel.
  • It is essential that you know where the filler caps are for Oil, Transmission Fluid, Power steering Fluid, Windscreen wash, Brake fluid and Antifreeze. Note! Severe Danger of Scalding - never try to remove the filler cap from the radiator or header tank bottle until the engine has cooled down enough - wait at least 20mins
  • Read your manual or handbook to find out where the car fuse boxes are located. (some cars have more than one fuse box) Keep a selection of spare fuses and a spare set of light bulbs for your car in the glove compartment.
  • Enroll in a car maintenance class, most local councils run them specifically aimed at women.

Women Drivers - General Advice - Can breakdowns be prevented?

Tips and Advice - Article No.2 RoadDriver 2010

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