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Car Seatbelt Maintenance...

21 December 2014, 12:05 PM

The number of accidents in India has gone up at an alarming rate. NCRB reports that in 2011, 78 per cent of deaths due to injury were caused because of road accidents. The number of fatalities on account of these road accidents could have been significantly reduced had the vehicle occupants worn seat belts. It is a known fact that seat belts save lives, when they work, although they seldom fail. In this car maintenance guide, we will provide you some car care tips on how to take care and maintain these life-saving kits. These should be a part of your regular vehicle maintenance schedule also.

So, what all can you do to make sure that the seat belts in your vehicle function properly? Let’s take a look at some car care tips that you can execute yourself.

  • Wear And Tear – Seat belts wear out due to regular use and the extreme weather conditions that they get subjected to in our sub-continent. Hence, seat belts should be checked at least once every year for any nips or cuts. Even a tear as small as 5 mm can drastically affect the performance of the seat belt.

  • Cleaning - Whenever the vehicle is cleaned, the seat belts should also be cleaned. It is a vehicle maintenance activity that should be carried out regularly. Specified cleaning products are available that don’t cause damage to the seat belt strap or corrode the buckles and restrainers. Use mild soap and water to clean the seat belt and dry immediately using an absorbent cloth. Never use any lubricants to lubricate the buckle.

  • Faulty Buckles – Replace the buckle of your seat belt as soon as possible if you feel it is faulty. Since the safety is of utmost importance, no lapse should be shown in these matters. Do not attempt to repair these components but get an original replacement immediately.

  • Frayed Straps – This is one of the most common conditions found in vehicles in India. The straps of the seat belts are frayed due to multiple reasons. Some of the most common ones are:

  • Dust – Dust particles grind away the straps when they are pulled or fastened

  • Solar Exposure – Excessive exposure to the sun causes the straps to deteriorate at a faster rate.

  • So, if the straps do not pass through the buckles smoothly, you should get them replaced by your car's mechanic at the earliest.

  • Maintaining Correct Tension – Seat belts should be checked regularly to ensure that they are neither loose nor too tight. These need to be checked at a specialized workshop that has the equipment to test the required seat belt tension.

Follow this simple car maintenance guide to ensure that your car seat belts are in mint condition. These simple but often neglected car care tips should become a part of your routine vehicle maintenance schedule. 

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