Direct Line warns Britons against DIY car repairs

02 June 2005
Britons are continuing to try to fix their cars alone, despite being ill-equipped and unprepared, a new study claims.

Research from Direct Line Breakdown shows that more than one in three (38 per cent) motorists have a go at mending their motor after a breakdown.

However, over three quarters (77 per cent) fail to repair the problem and only one in ten drivers (11 per cent) understand how their engine works.

The survey also found that motorists' repair equipment leaves a lot to be desired, with two thirds (62 per cent) of those polled saying they do not carry jump leads, despite flat batteries being the number one cause of a breakdown in the UK.

More than one in ten (11 per cent) of respondents said that they failed to carry a spare tyre and one in five said they carried old-fashioned remedies in their car maintenance DIY kits including chewing gum, coat hangers, gaffer tape and stockings.

Eleven per cent of drivers admitted that do not check that they have enough petrol before setting out on a long journey and a quarter (23 per cent) fail to check their water levels.

Direct Line Breakdown spokeswoman Emma Holyer said: "It's entirely natural to feel out of your depth if your car breaks down and as cars become more sophisticated, it will be increasingly difficult for drivers to administer a self-help solution.

"The best advice any motorist can take is ensure you have breakdown cover for your car so you can call in the experts in the case of a problem."

Click here to compare breakdown insurance.

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