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After the last two freezing cold winters, you're probably shivering already at the thought of more snow and ice descending on the UK. You may also be concerned about the impact the cold winter months have on your driving.

Preparing for Winter

The white stuff has already descended across many parts of the country as a mild November gives way to a decidedly chillier December, while the Met Office has been issuing severe weather warnings for Scotland, Northern Ireland and much of northern England.

Police are warning drivers to take extra care on the roads, with a number of serious accidents having been reported in recent days. Giving your car a good service now, even if your town or city has not yet been affected by the wintry conditions, could be a good idea.

First of all, packing a few winter essentials into your boot is advisable. A blanket and extra clothing will keep you and your passengers warm if your car breaks down, while water will keep you hydrated. A torch could also come in handy if you are stranded at night, while a shovel could dig you out of a snow drift.

Battery jump leads, a scraper, some de-icer and a first aid kit are also useful items to have to hand, and don't forget the sunglasses. It may be December, but the sun can still shine, and when it does it's lower in the sky so can easily dazzle you.

Top up the anti-freeze in your radiator before setting out on your journey, and always ensure you have a clean windscreen, replacing your windscreen wipers if needed. Remember, too, that if it does snow, you need to clear it from your roof before you set off as it could be a safety hazard.

Wondering whether you need winter tyres? Depending on where you live, they could be an essential car part. Because the previous two winters have been so cold, winter tyres are in high demand this year, so ordering early from a car parts finder like Breakeryard could be a wise move.