Covid-19: Should you start your car during Covid-19 MCO?

Jerrica · Mar 23, 2020 06:59 PM

car care tips during movement control order

While the country is sitting through a Movement Control Order to curb the spread of Covid-19, our cars are getting a well-deserved rest from its daily gruelling commute. Leaving the car inactive for 2 weeks will not damage your car, but with a possibility of MCO extending, you might want to follow these steps.

In the event that MCO is extended, we highly suggest that you…

Car bonnet open

Drive the car around to heat up the engine

It is common knowledge that leaving your car inactive will often result in flat batteries. While this doesn't really affect cars but, in the event that MCO is extended, leaving the car inactive for too long is still ill advise. We recommend to start the car at least once a week and drive the car around the neighbourhood.

Yes, you will need to drive it around because you will need to heat the engine fluids up sufficiently. If you don’t, you will only drain the battery more and you will find yourself facing a flat battery.

Car battery

Do not unplug your battery terminal

Sure, it’s perfectly fine to unplug the battery to prevent unnecessary drain on an old car, but on a modern car, unplugging the battery will reset the car's electronics and create a hassle that would delay you from just jumping in the car and driving off. 

Checking tyre pressure

Picture credit to Waran Photography

Good time to check your tyre pressure

While you’re out and about, we recommend driving over to the petrol station to check your car’s tyre pressure.

FYI, petrol stations are doing their utmost in sanitizing their kiosks by sanitizing their stations every hour to help curb the spread of the virus.

Old car headlights - check your head and tail lights

Good time to check for wear and tear

This would be a good time to check on the car part’s wear and tear since we’re mostly stuck at home with nothing to do. No, we’re not talking about technical parts, we’re referring to parts like light bulbs around the car and checking the fluid levels - engine oil, power steering (if hydraulic type), coolant, windshield washer, etc. 

Check for leaks by spreading newspapers under the car for a few days, if the newspaper comes away with any fluid on it, you might want to get it sorted as soon as possible. 

car care tips during MCO

Keep your car clean if your car is left outdoors

If your car is parked outdoors, always make sure that the car is clean. Tree sap and bird droppings will damage your car paint.

Remember to deploy the sun shades to prevent the UV rays from damaging the car’s interior material. Leaving a gap in the windows will also help reduce the heat inside the car to prevent the materials from “baking”.



There isn’t a time in memory that doesn’t involve staring at cars. After discovering the excitement of watching Schumacher vs Hakkinen, Formula 1 became a major part of life. The love for cars and F1 ultimately led to a job with CAR Magazine. The untimely death of the magazine meant a hiatus from cars at lifestyle women’s magazine Marie Claire before another opportunity came knocking again.

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