Preparedness is the key to enjoy enhanced performance from your car during the harsh summer heat. Keep a vehicle maintained does not have to be expensive, or take up too much time. With just a few tips, summer maintenance is simple.
Keep Your Car Cool
The key to making it around during those summer months is keeping the engine cool. This means checking all coolant system hoses and belts to ensure they are free from cracks. The hoses should also remain firm and not malleable. If the hoses or belts show signs of breakage or wear, they need replaced immediately. You should also check the radiator itself. If any of these components fail, leaking can occur. Once too much coolant leaks out, the system fails to cool the engine, which results in severe engine damage. Check the coolant levels often.
Maintain Tyre Pressure
When the temperatures soar, tyre pressure increases. An under-inflated tyre puts too much pressure on the sidewall, which can cause it to blow out. This is not only dangerous; it can increase your petrol usage. On the other hand, a tyre with too much air in it can lead to hydroplaning as the tyre loses contact with the road. Check the tyre pressure often to avoid those things. You should also check to make sure it has adequate amounts of tread. This can save you from ending up stranded in the event of a flat.
Get Regular Oil Changes
Oil is vital to a vehicle and keeping it at an adequate level is important. If the car runs for too long on low oil levels, it can cause the engine catastrophic damage. The same is true if the oil becomes contaminated or breaks down. This is why it is important to check the oil on a regular basis and get an oil change as specified in your vehicle's owner's manual. Some manufacturers recommend the changes every 4 828 kilometres, while others believe every 12 875 or so is just fine. If at any time, you notice the oil is really dark in colour or appears to have water in it, it is time for a change.
Remove Winter Elements
If you drive your car a lot during the winter months, you need to remove the salt and grime that builds up underneath. This is especially true if you live in areas prone to snow. If left alone, this salt can lead to rust or other body damage. When washing the car during the summer, pay careful attention to the undercarriage. Lots of grime can also affect the engine and transmission by preventing heat from escaping through the bottom of the vehicle. A high-pressure hose or cleaning system works well for removing this debris.
Replace the Air Filter
It Is recommended that drivers replace their air filter at least every 19 312 kilometres. A good time to do so is when you are having the oil changed. The air filter catches dirt and debris and prevents it from entering the engine. If the air filter becomes clogged up, you can get poor fuel efficiency or worse yet, a vehicle that does not run well. Replacing the air filter is much less expensive than making engine repairs.
Replace the Wiper Blades
When preparing for those spring and summer showers, ensure your wiper blades are up to par. When that rain is pounding against your windshield, you need blades that clear away the water easily so your visibility does not decrease too much. If after a few passes, your wipers leave streaks, this is an indication that it is time for a replacement. Make sure when replacing the blades, you pick up the correct ones for your exact vehicle. You might also need to replace the entire blade rather than just the rubber.
Check the Brakes
The brakes are one of the most vital safety features on a vehicle and failing to maintain them can put you and others at risk. Even if the brakes seem to work okay, you still need to check them periodically to ensure the pads are not wearing down. Once the brake pads wear down, you are not just in danger, but you take a chance that the rotors will also suffer from damage. An investment in new pads here and there can save you money in the long run. Other signs that you need to check the brakes includes soft or mushy brake pedals, squealing or grinding and a lit-up warning light on the dashboard.
When getting back and forth safely is important to you, maintaining your car is a must regardless of the time of year. With a few tips on how to take care of your ride, you will get where you need to go safely. Most of these maintenance checks require very few tools and even less time.