6 expert tips to maintain your van and save £4,400 in costs

By Laura Linham

7th Mar 2024 | News

Traffic is part and parcel of the job but that doesn’t mean you can’t find ways to cut costs with your van where possible
Traffic is part and parcel of the job but that doesn’t mean you can’t find ways to cut costs with your van where possible

Traffic is part and parcel of the job but that doesn't mean you can't find ways to cut costs with your van where possible and even improve your driving when stuck in traffic to avoid any costly fixes. 

Always look for affordable van insurance to make savings each year

When it comes to your van, one of the most important things you can do is look for affordable van insurance. If you travel up and down the country, this will protect you if you are involved in an accident or even if your van is damaged or stolen on those trips. 

There are different levels of van insurance, with fully comprehensive cover offering you the highest level of protection and peace of mind for those jobs where you have to travel long distances. 

In some cases, accidents are unavoidable and often not your fault. However, claims-free driving does help to accumulate discounts. One year of no claims is around a 30% discount with this increasing the longer you drive claim-free. 

Do the daily inspection to avoid unnecessary van repair costs of £600 

Before you go to a job, walk around your van and give it the once over. As part of your daily checklist, you should: 

  • Ensure all doors are properly shut when leaving your van unattended 
  • Check the tyres are at the correct pressure (you can do this when filling up if you are unable to do this daily) and there aren't any visible signs of damage on your tyres
  • Make sure anything you are travelling with is secure in the van 
  • Anything attached to the van is secure 

You should also do similar checks when in the van. If you notice anything at all, book it in to be seen as soon as possible to avoid any further risk to your van. A recent report found that the average repair bill for an unexpected fix is around £600. This could be saved by your daily checklists and ensuring nothing goes unnoticed and, if you spot something, get it checked immediately. 

Don't miss a van service 

It's tempting to miss a service for a job or even delay it, especially if you are busy, but as your van is your livelihood, it's important to give it the care it needs. That means, taking your van for regular servicing to ensure everything is running as it should, at least, once a year. It might be wise to up that number if you do travel far for work. 

Typically, a van service can cost anywhere upwards of £150. It's also estimated that UK drivers spend around £1,300 on repairs and maintenance each year, with that one service potentially saving you hundreds by ensuring any issues are dealt with.  

If for some reason your van does need to go in for a repair, as part of our van insurance extras, you can get a replacement van while yours is being repaired so you can keep working. 

Keep it clean to avoid over £300 in costs 

Cleaning your van is essential for preventing the likes of rust and, of course, showing the branding on your van clearly. If you want people to call you, they need to see the number on the van. But did you know repairing rust on vehicles can cost over £300

If you are travelling each day, a good practice is to clean your van, at least, fortnightly. This will also help ensure your visibility is clearer when driving and, of course, save hundreds of pounds in costly repairs and even further damage later down the line, which could even stop you from taking on jobs. 

Check your tyres to avoid fines of up to £2,500

You should always check your tyres daily and certainly before travelling a long distance for jobs. Check they are in good condition and look for any bulges or splits or noticeable wear that rings alarm bells. 

You should also maintain the habit of checking your tyre pressure. You could even do this when cleaning your van to get into the habit. Alongside the pressure, check your tyres meet the minimum tread depth of 1.6mm. 

A good way to check the tread depth is by using a 20p coin and placing it in the tyre grooves. If the outer band of the coin can be seen, your tread depth may not be at the legal minimum. If you are stopped with tyres below this tread depth, you could be fined a staggering £2,500 per illegal tyre and receive three points on your licence. 

Don't run your fuel down and risk a replacement over £1,000

Keep your fuel tank around halfway or just above a quarter to prevent any damage to the fuel pump. It can be tempting to run fuel down until the dash light comes on but that can cause unnecessary damage to your van.  

The cost of replacing a fuel pump can hit over £1,000, with the price rising depending on the van model and the age of your van. If you continually run your fuel down, the likelihood of this needing to be replaced sooner will increase. So, taking measures to avoid this unnecessary damage can lead to significant savings. 

If you have any questions on van insurance or the types of insurance we provide, get in touch with our expert team today. 


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