Whether it’s a summer road trip or a beach gateway, your vehicle is a trusted companion in enjoying the hot weather.
But summer driving has unique problems as the heat affects your vehicle’s essential systems.
That’s why giving your car the necessary care to withstand high temperatures is vital.
In this article, we’ll explore essential summer car care tips to help your vehicle beat the heat, and help you avoid problems in sweltering temperatures.
This Article Contains:
- 11 Essential Summer Car Care Tips to Beat the Heat
- Check the Air Conditioning System
- Monitor Tire Pressure and Tire Tread
- Evaluate Wheel Alignment
- Replace Windshield Wipers
- Evaluate Fluid Levels
- Inspect Brakes
- Test the Car Battery
- Clean or Replace Any Dirty Air Filter
- Monitor the Engine Cooling System
- Replace Worn Hoses
- Prepare Your Emergency Roadside Kit
Let’s get started.
11 Essential Summer Car Care Tips to Beat the Heat
From scorching roads to increased air conditioning usage, the summer heat can take a toll on a car’s performance and longevity. So to ensure a safe and enjoyable summer, preparing for the unexpected challenges the heat brings is crucial.
Below are a few summer car maintenance tips that’ll help you along the way:
1. Check the Air Conditioning System
Your air conditioning system must be in good condition to survive the summer sun. That’s why it’s advisable to have a mechanic inspect your air conditioner before starting a summer road trip.
For example, if the air conditioner releases hot air when switched on, it might be low on refrigerant levels. A mechanic will add a refrigerant charge to solve the problem. If that doesn’t work, they can further diagnose and treat the issue before it ruins your road trip.
By the way, if you first get hot air when your car’s been baking in the sun — that’s normal. It’s when the air doesn’t cool down that you have a problem.
2. Monitor Tire Pressure and Tire Tread
The extreme heat of summer scorches the road, which can cause excessive tire wear.
Before you enjoy the hot weather, have your tires checked for damage. Evaluate the tire pressure and tire tread. The correct air pressure in your tires helps improve gas mileage and safety.
Moreover, don’t forget to check your spare tire!
In the event of an unfortunate tire blowout, having a spare tire in good condition can help you return to enjoying the summer sun.
3. Evaluate Wheel Alignment
The summer season comes with increased traffic, so it’s crucial to be able to steer your car safely.
If you feel your steering wheel is vibrating or not centered when driving on a straight road, get a mechanic to check your wheel alignment. Doing so will let you steer properly and enjoy a smoother ride in hot weather.
4. Replace Windshield Wipers
With the summer months rolling up and the temperature rising, it’s possible to experience rainfall. That’s why your windshield wiper should become a top priority in your car care routine to ensure maximum visibility on the road.
Prior to starting your road trip, inspect your windshield wiper blades for cracks and splits. If they seem damaged, you can have a mechanic replace them quickly.
5. Evaluate Fluid Levels
Summer driving can become a hassle as the sun’s UV rays intensify the heat.
As the heat increases, it can cause the fluids in your car, such as engine oil, battery water, and transmission fluid, to evaporate.
So, if you want to care for your car during summer properly, don’t forget to check your fluid levels. Your mechanic will top off your power steering fluid, engine oil, brake fluid, battery water, and transmission fluid if need be.
6. Inspect Brakes
The quality and functionality of your brakes are a matter of life and death and should be part of your summer or any other season’s car care routine.
You can get a mechanic to look at your brakes and brake fluid levels to ensure they’re fine. If not, they can perform brake repair to rectify the issue.
7. Test the Car Battery
Whether it’s winter or summer, your car’s battery needs care.
But here’s the thing:
Extreme heat can harm your car battery by causing unwanted corrosion and battery drain.
To fight off the effect of the heat, have a mechanic test your battery. This way, you’ll better understand how well it’s functioning and how secure the battery connections are.
8. Clean or Replace Any Dirty Air Filter
The air filters in your car block dirt and debris from entering your engine cooling system and air conditioner since they can cause mechanical damage.
To keep debris out of your car during your summer vacation, ensure that your engine and cabin air filter is clean. If either the engine air filter or cabin air filter is excessively clogged, ensure that you get a suitable replacement air filter.
9. Monitor the Engine Cooling System
Engine overheating is one of the leading causes of breakdowns in the summer. As such, your cooling system must be in peak condition when the temperature rises.
Have a mechanic assess your cooling system and check your coolant level. They’ll perform a coolant fluid flush to replenish reserves if your coolant level is low.
Remember: Coolant fluid helps combat engine overheating — a recurring issue in high temperatures. That’s why keeping an eye on the coolant reservoir is a good idea to avoid severe engine problems.
10. Replace Worn Hoses
Driving in the summer heat pushes your car to operate at less-than-ideal temperatures. This increased heat can increase the pressure on crucial engine components, leading to fluid leaks and an eventual breakdown.
What should you do?
Before you embark on a road trip, check the hoses in your vehicle for any swelling or leaks. This way, you can avoid losing brake fluid or coolant en route to your summer vacation destination.
11. Prepare Your Emergency Roadside Kit
While you’re preparing to enjoy the summer months, preparing for any mishaps you may encounter on the road is also helpful.
Always keep an emergency roadside kit in your car in case of a breakdown or tire blowout. The kit should consist of a tire jack, jumper cables, a compressor, a first aid kit, and a small toolbox.
Taking care of your car during summer is essential to ensure a smooth and safe driving experience. Following the car maintenance tips above can keep your vehicle in optimal condition and avoid any potential breakdowns or costly repairs.
Simple practices, like regularly inspecting and cleaning the filters and evaluating fluid levels, will help you enjoy worry-free journeys and make the most of the summer season ahead.
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