Gender divide still exists over car maintenance

12th September 2013

Maintaining a vehicle and carrying out regular checks is vital for all drivers, whether they are male or female, as taking the time to monitor the condition of a vehicle can help cut down repair costs and may save lives as a failure on the road could result in a serious collisions.

However, new research published by Admiral Insurance has indicated there is a gender divide when it comes to carrying out vehicle maintenance.

The firm commissioned a YouGov survey, which asked 3,120 drivers about their knowledge of simple vehicle-related tasks.

It discovered that 17 per cent of female drivers do not know how to change a wheel, check the oil level, tyre pressures, tread depths or coolant levels, compared to just four per cent of men who admitted they would struggle with the tasks also.

Male motorists were found to be twice as likely as women to know how to change a wheel should a problem occur and one and a half times as likely to know how to check their tread depth.

These are crucial tasks for motorists, as a failure to change a tyre could leave drivers stranded on the side of the road. Not checking tyre tread depths could mean people are driving around in a vehicle that is not fit for the road.

A lack of tread depth can result in increased stopping distances, particularly in the rain, which makes a collision much more likely.

Admiral managing director, Sue Longthorn, said that making sure a vehicle is fit to be driven on the roads is vital to it performing as it should do.

"It's worrying to see that such a number of women, particularly young women, don't know how to carry out simple and essential checks on their vehicles. Tyres without the required level of tread are not only illegal, but also very dangerous, particularly as we move into autumn with leaves falling onto roads."

The survey found knowledge among men increases with age, while women at both ends of the age scale appear to have the least understanding.