Beat the heat with these summer car maintenance tips
June 24, 2021
Trust us, you aren’t the only one feeling the heat this summer. Your vehicle, ready to take you on a long road trip, is reminding you that it’s time for some summer car care. But what exactly does that involve?
That’s where we come in. We’ll give you the summer car maintenance tips that will get your wheels ready to hit the pavement forsummer road trips.
A maintained car withstands the test of time
Car maintenance goes beyond the warning light reminding you that it’s time to change the oil in your car. Throughout the year, your car requires attention to keep it safe and reliable and bear whatever weather and memorable moments are on the horizon.
Because on the flip side, an unmaintained car can create a wide range of issues, including those of a financial nature. Often, when a vehicle goes without car care, it is more susceptible to complications and its value can decline–quickly.
So how do you prevent that from happening? By referencing a helpful list of car maintenance tips and mindfully putting them to practice, of course.
What’s a good starting point for maintenance on a car?
If you’re new to car maintenance, it can feel overwhelming, especially when you look through that thick car manual that’s buried in your glove box. Here’s our first tip: Take a deep breath. You’re doing great, and you can do this.
With the countless car maintenance checklists out there, it’s vital to know what maintenance is a must to keep your car operating properly. While car maintenance lists vary, here’s a good starting point:
Tires - use the “quarter test” to make sure you’ve got sufficient tread and that they are inflated to the recommended pressure (per your manual)
Fluids - besides your engine oil, experts recommend checking brake fluid, transmission fluids, coolant and power steering fluid
Battery - regularly test your car battery with a multimeter, and check for any corrosion from the battery terminal
Lights - clean your car lenses and replace the bulbs when they begin to dim
Annual inspections - pay close attention to your car’s suggested maintenance and inspection schedule
Have a summer car maintenance checklist on hand
Although having maintenance covered year-round is important, remember to address specific maintenance that will keep your car running properly with every season.
And in the summertime, there are car care tips that will help keep your car going, going and going.
First, test the AC unit in your vehicle
Wait, you mean I shouldn’t be sweating like this?
Summer brings the heat, but that doesn’t mean the inside of your car should be feeling the same way. Before the weather gets too warm, test the AC in your car and if it's blowing warm air, consider the following:
Reference your car manual for troubleshooting
Clean any debris from the vents
Check connections for any refrigerant leaks
If you’re still not having success, it may take a second set of eyes from a licensed and trusted mechanic to address the issue.
Second, replace your windshield wiper blades
If you haven’t replaced the blades for your windshield in over a year, it may be time to wipe away the old and bring in the new. As you travel during the summertime, you could meet a wide range of weather conditions, including heavy rain or dust storms.
Keeping a fresh set of windshield wipers on the front and back (if applicable) of your vehicle will make for a safe driving experience.
Third, prepare for the unexpected
As much as we’d like to think there’s nothing that could go wrong with your car during a summer trip, sometimes the unexpected happens, and being prepared for these moments will help get you back on the road quickly and safely, with less stress.
In the back of your car, keep an emergency kit made for summer with the following: a gallon of water, additional water bottles for drinking, nonperishable snacks, a solar phone charger, first aid essentials and roadside assistance information.
Fourth, have your tank filled
Unless you’re a gas pump wizard, you’re like most of us when we forget to fill up. Imagine sitting in unexpected bumper-to-bumper traffic and the fuel warning light on your car is telling you it’s time to fill up.
You watch your mile range tick down, your stress levels are at an all-time high as you contemplate options. Thankfully you make it off the exit, find a gas station with a mile on the reader to spare.
If you’re preparing for a long summer vacation, plan ahead and map out the gas stations that will keep you from ever seeing that dreaded low fuel level light.
Make the most of summer this year
With a maintained car, you’ve got the world at your fingertips. Make the most of your summer by spending time with family and friends, soaking up the sun by the pool, eating that one extra slice of watermelon and feeling the wind blow through your hair on a long summer night drive.
We’ll see you out there!The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with HiRoad®. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. HiRoad is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. HiRoad makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.
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