Drive Less – Spend Less with Enthusiast

December 18th, 2018

Come the summer and Australian owners of older models are thinking about parking their cars until the weather cools down a bit. In the Northern Hemisphere our classic-owning cousins have the opposite problem; they are concerned at the hazards that heavy snow and ice-covered roads might present.

As motor vehicles get older and become less common we do think more about how and when they can be safely used.

Keeping our fuel receipts and noting mileage each time we fill the tank is a good way to trace use patterns. It also reminds us of when fuel costs were at their highest and identify any unusual increases in consumption.

Enthusiast Insurance helps owners keep a lid on their vehicle running costs by offering insurance based on annual distance travelled. You may have several vehicles, all insured under the Enthusiast Drive Less…Spend Less system and with different permitted distances.

Each year at renewal you will be asked to check and amend where needed the level of cover you require and that is where a record of just how much each member of the fleet has been used is helpful.

You might be aware that a change in your use pattern is coming and the start of a policy year is the best time to amend your Enthusiast policy to anticipate that change.

If circumstances change or you perhaps decide at short notice to attend an interstate motoring club event, one phone call to 1800 10 10 44 will reinstate the previous distance limit or obtain additional cover.

Caring for a vehicle that isn’t used much also requires some thought and planning. Older-style wheels and tyres can lose pressure much faster than modern designs so owning a tyre pressure gauge and portable compressor is good idea for owners of multiple cars. A good useful Christmas present as well.

Australia in summer is one of the best places in the world to discover that your car’s cooling system isn’t working as it should. Cars that don’t get used much during the warmer months from October until March can be among the worst offenders, so allocate one day during the holiday season flushing the cooling system.

A running hose in through the top of the radiator with the engine idling and the bottom hose disconnected might see it disgorge all manner of muck and mud. There are proprietary cooling system products but check the owners’ manual or consult other owners of similar models before using them.

Check all hose connections, even the ones that are hard to reach, are tight with no signs of previous leaks. Then replace the bottom hose and with the heater in the ‘On’ position fill the system with new coolant, noting the manufacturer’s maximum capacity.

Don’t ever use plain water, especially in an engine with alloy components. Take the vehicle for a run to get to full temperature, let the engine cool and check if the level has dropped.

Oil can get old the moment you pour it out of the container so even if your vehicle covers minimal distances, change the oil at least every 12 months. Older-style oils don’t adhere to engine internals like the modern ones do so it’s a good idea to let the motor wind over for a few revolutions to get the oil circulating before activating the choke and starting engine. That will alleviate the wear that occurs with the choke chucking raw fuel into the cylinders, the motor turning at quite high revs and most of the oil still down in the sump.

If you are reading the Enthusiast Insurance blog for the first time and don’t know about our Drive Less….Spend Less system, just click on the Quick Quote panel and get started on your journey of discovery in a very different world of specialist motor insurance.

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