As a responsible car owner, you know how important it is to schedule regular maintenance for your vehicle. While maintenance is important year-round, there are certain seasons that are rougher on your car than others. This is especially true when it comes to the summer.
The elevated heat of the summer months can take a serious toll on your car, reducing its functionality and potentially shortening its life span. Make sure your vehicle makes it through the hot months unscathed by following these general summer car care tips.
Stick to the Basics
When it comes to summer car care, it’s best to keep it simple. There are a few maintenance tasks that will go a long way towards keeping your car running smoothly. For example, one of the most basic, yet highly effective, things you can do for your car during the summer is maintaining the engine oil.
To get an accurate view of your oil level, you should run your car for a few minutes before checking the oil. If the level is low, you should add more oil. If it is tacky, it’s probably time for an oil change. While the old rule of thumb was to have your oil changed every 3,000 miles, newer models only need a change every 7,500 miles.
Keep Things Cool
Obviously, the biggest threat to your car during the summer is overheating. This is what makes it so important to make sure your cooling system is working effectively. One of the best ways to maintain your cooling system is to ensure the fluid levels are correct. Ideally, the fluid in your radiator will be half coolant and half distilled water. This mix will help keep your engine cool and reduce your risk of overheating.
It’s also a good idea to have your cooling system inspected before the start of the summer driving season. A proper cooling system test covers a few important items, including a fan test, a visual inspection, a pressure test, and a thermostat check. Have a trusted maintenance professional examine your cooling system to make sure it’s ready for the stress of the year’s hottest months.
Kick the Tires, Don’t Light the Fires
Most people don’t realize how taxing the heat can be on their vehicle, including the tires. When constantly exposed to high temperatures, the tires of your vehicle can easily deflate. If your tire pressure is too low, you have an elevated risk of losing control of your vehicle and getting into a serious accident.
Throughout the summer months, you need to check your tires to make sure they are inflated correctly. If you’re unsure of the proper pressure for your tires, you should check your owner’s manual, which should tell you the right amount of tire pressure for your vehicle. By maintaining the right tire pressure, you’ll be both keeping yourself safe and reducing long-term wear and tear on your car’s engine.
Everyone wants to make sure their car will run well for thousands of miles to come. Keep your car running well throughout the summer by following these general car care tips.