The summer season offers perfect weather for traveling, road trips, and some suntan. But all of those plans can get messed up because of car troubles.
As the sunny skies and open roads come calling, so does extreme heat that can create problems in the most critical systems of your car.
So, before you hit the accelerator for your trips, take care of your car and do the proper maintenance. These simple precautions will not only keep you and your family safe on the road, but they will also save you money at the pumps.
Here Are 6 Tips For Your Car Maintenance:
1. Check the AC
The first thing you’ll search for in your car in the summertime is the air conditioning.
You’ll feel the need when the temperature soars and beats you down.
Make sure to test it before the summer season gets to its peak.
If your AC is mad at you and throwing hot air, you may consider refilling refrigerants to calm it down. However, if the relationship remains unstable, you may need professional help from a car mechanic.
And if you’re not satisfied with only the cool breeze of the AC, you can consider installing new cabin air filters to add a fresh and clean zing to your car space.
R-12 or Freon was the most popular refrigerant back in the day. But it creates too much CFC that’s destructive to our ozone layer.
And we all owe a dime or two to mother nature. So, that has been banned in many places.
Instead, you can look for R-134a. It’s much safer and can be retrofitted to older systems too.
2. Check your tires
Tires are probably the most overlooked part of a car. But under-inflated or over-inflated, misaligned, or weary tires can be fatal, especially in hot summer weather.
Before any trip or adventure, check them once. The most common and recommended tire pressure is anything between 30 to 35 PSI (pounds per square inch).
If you have doubts, refer to your car’s manual to know the exact range.
Proper tire pressure prevents flat tires and blowout. They also help you to get the best possible mileage.
And don’t forget about the spare one. Keep it in usable condition. Then, in emergency situations, your spare will be your savior.
3. Check the breaks
Brakes are undoubtedly the most important safety mechanism in any vehicle.
You wouldn’t want to put your family in harm’s way, would you?
So, negate this risk at the bud, and check for any worn down or defective brakes.
If the lining on the brake pad or the brake shoe has visibly weakened or gone past the minimum thickness (according to the car manufacturer or/and state law).
Before the summer frenzy, check your brake linings in any service shop. If you observe any problem, get it fixed as soon as possible.
The cost of a brake repair can drastically increase if you neglect even the minor issues.
4. Clean your battery
We all know that in the winters, batteries tend to go dead. But the real truth is that summertime can cause much more damage.
Heat is the biggest enemy of any battery, and in summers, the natural heat can degrade the battery very easily. This can exponentially reduce your battery’s lifespan.
The best way to keep your battery healthy is to maintain its cleanliness. In summer, regularly put off the cables and wipe the terminals. Then, strap down the battery tight and secure.
And if you feel that it isn’t holding the charge well enough, take it for an inspection at a service shop.
5. Keep your car in the shade
On exhaustingly hot days, try to park the car in the shade as much as possible. It keeps the car cool naturally and can prolong the lifespan.
The summer sun can even cause burnout to the exteriors and the paint. It also significantly heats the interiors, making it uncomfortable when you get into the car and sit.
Window shades can help too. They block UV rays, resist the inside of your car from getting abnormally hot, and can provide protection from long-term damages.
6. Check the oil and oil filters
Oil is like the blood running in the veins of your car. All the restless engine parts are kept clean and cool by the oil.
Most manuals advocate changing your oil and the filter after every 7500 miles or 12070 km, whereas many specialists only recommend changing them after 3000 miles or 4828 km.
If you’re planning to do some heavy driving in summer, it’s best to change the oil and the filter, as they will likely face overheating. At the very least, check them before any long trip you make.
Summertime is fun. But the fun part lasts as long as you’re safe.
So, take these precautions and look at your car before hitting the road. A total breakdown will be disappointing, and there are far worse things that can happen without proper maintenance.