Now that Memorial Day’s behind us, summer is right around the corner! Making this the perfect time to share some simple car care tips. Whether you’re planning a long-distance vacation or just looking to stay comfortable during your day-to-day commute, your vehicle deserves a little attention. Feel free to handle some of these basic tasks on your own, but leave larger repairs/services to the professionals, please!
Check Your Battery
Your battery is an essential element of your engine. One that’s especially vulnerable to the high temperatures ahead. Many people associate battery failure and/or damage with winter, but, in reality, the summer’s much worse. Sometimes, it just takes a little while for the problem(s) to manifest themselves—which is why you see a lot of stalls in colder weather.
Act now to protect your car’s battery with a few simple steps. Although you can’t do much about the heat, you can clean up corrosion around the connections that lead to problems down the road. We also recommend checking your battery’s mount to ensure that it’s tight and minimize vibrations. If your battery is 3 years old (or more), then you may want to have it professionally tested too. This additional step can eliminate unpleasant surprises while you’re driving this summer.
Fill Your Fluids
Since fluids help to keep your engine cool during the warm summer months, it’s especially important that you check them regularly. Apart from engine coolant, other fluids help to carry heat away from essential mechanical elements. Once they drop below a certain level, you run the risk of overheating and potentially damaging internal parts, including your transmission, power steering, brake lines, etc. Even in a pinch, be sure to use the recommended fluids, as outlined in your owner’s manual. Please don’t use that trick you always see in movies where people add water or other (corrosive) liquids to cool down their engines. When in doubt, take your car to a professional service station this summer and have them top off your fluids!
Okay, this step sounds like a luxury, but it actually plays an important role in your summer car care. Be sure you check your air conditioning early in the season to have a comfortable—and safe—driving experience all season long. When interior temperatures get uncomfortably warm, you run the risk of driving with increased fatigue and decreased alertness. Both of which create a dangerous combination for you and other drivers on the road.
In the event of an emergency, we also recommend keeping certain supplies on hand. Create your own kit with help from the National Safety Council including important items like tools, flashlight(s), reflective strips, first aid materials, duct tape, and a cell phone charger. As well as supplies designed to ensure your comfort, like a blanket, nonperishable food, water, etc. Hopefully, you’ll never have to use them, but it’s better to keep them close by—in any season.
Don’t forget to check on your auto insurance, too! You should always have an up-to-date insurance card in your glove compartment. Along with a basic understanding of what your policy covers. For a personal review of your current coverage, contact Freedom Insurance Agency! We hoped you enjoyed our simple summer car care tips. Safe travels!