Young people don’t know how to look after their cars, research suggests

young people car maintenance

New research suggests that half of young people don’t know how to perform the most basic checks on their car.

A study of 2,000 drivers, commissioned by Continental Tyres, revealed that half of 18-24 year-olds wouldn’t know how to check oil levels or tyre pressures on their car. Similarly, just 56 percent of young drivers in this bracket said they would be comfortable topping up their screen wash. To cap it off, just 19 percent of 18-24 year-olds said they would be happy to tackle swapping out a puncture for a spare.

Worryingly, if not surprisingly, just one in ten 18-24 year-old drivers that responded, said they’d be confident in their use of a traditional paper map.

Young people aren’t ignorant to the gaps in their knowledge, though. Just under a two-thirds (62 percent) acknowledged that they could save money by mastering routine maintenance. Similarly, over 80 percent conceded that their parents were more able than they were when it came to car maintenance.

A declining mechanical acumen isn’t a trend that starts with today’s 18-24 year-olds, either. Over half of the over-55s said their parents would be more capable around maintaining a car than they are.

Is older better?

So how does the older generation fare where the youngsters fall down? Fairly well, but it’s not a walkover. Older motorists, by comparison to the younger generation, are three times as likely to tackle replacing a blown bulb, and twice as likely to attempt swapping wiper blades.

Predictably, 55 percent of older drivers said they could confidently use a map, compared to just one in ten youngsters.

Nevertheless, the numbers of those willing to change a tyre, while greater than the younger generation’s 19 percent figure, isn’t that impressive, at 45 percent.

young people car maintenance

“All age groups pointed to people becoming more tech-savvy and less mechanically-minded, with younger people having an advantage,” said Mark Griffiths of Continental Tyres.

“The more knowledge and insight we all have, the better our driving experience and the safer the environment for all.”

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