Did you know that just like people, cars are affected by the heat?  Now that the dog days of summer are upon us, it is important you protect your car if you haven’t yet had a chance.  “Season-proofing” your vehicle will increase its lifespan, improve the comfortability of your drive and ensure your safety.

Check out the Summer maintenance tips below to cruise safely into Fall:

1. Keep an eye on your tires.

Summer heat can cause extreme tire pressure fluctuation. In fact, tires can increase 1-2 PSI for every 10-degree increase in outside air temperature. By regulating your tire pressure periodically, you decrease tread wear, extend the life of your tires, and most importantly drive safely with peace of mind. Remember to also check your spare!

2. Check your vehicle’s hoses and belts.

Winter and a cooler Spring can be extremely harsh on these components. Inspect any belts for cracks or damage and be sure to replace/have them replaced if any issues are found. If any hoses seem soft and malleable it is a good idea to replace them as well. Your vehicle’s hoses should be firm. As they deteriorate, your vehicle may be left susceptible to overheating.

3. Change your oil and oil filter.

The extreme temperatures of Summer can cause more wear and tear on your motor, therefore, it is important that you keep fresh motor oil running through your engine. If your oil appears to be dark in color and dirty, that is a sure sign that your vehicle is in need of an oil change. Keeping clean motor oil in your engine will certainly help extend the life of your vehicle!

4. Replace your windshield wipers.

Throughout the winter, your windshield wipers take constant abuse from the elements. Ice, snow, salt, and other road grime can cause your wiper blades to break down quickly. Visibility is essential when driving and Summer has a tendency to drop rain on us when we are least expecting. Be sure to have new wiper blades to keep you safe when dealing with the elements.

5. Check your engine coolant.

Motors are designed to work under extreme heat, however, they can only take so much. Your vehicle’s cooling system is designed to keep your motor functioning at its optimal operating temperature, but when the coolant level is low and/or old, the motor’s temperature will increase. This increase in temperature puts more stress on the motor and can lead to internal damage of your vehicle’s engine. Checking your coolant’s level and protection can help you extend the life of your vehicle.

6. Change your vehicle’s air filter.

It is a good idea to check your air filter at the start of summer to ensure that it has not taken excessive abuse over the winter. Moreover, muddy Summer roads are covered in debris which over time can lead to a clogged air filter, decreasing fuel efficiency in your vehicle. A quick visual inspection will allow you to be able to tell if it is time for replacement or if your vehicle’s air filter still has life left in it.

7. Check your air conditioning system.

Nothing is more uncomfortable than being stuck to a hot leather seat in the summer. Many times air conditioning failure is caused by a low refrigerant level in your air conditioning system. Stop in and have us check your AC system so you can stay cool while cruising the interstate!