When the sunny, warm weather of summer is starting to cool down as fall slowly makes an appearance, you might think that your car is safe at last, probably safe from the harsh heat of summer. While it might be true, that does not mean that your car won’t be needing some care anymore. It does, whatever the weather may be, our car always needs proper care and maintenance. To help you with the summer-to-fall transition, we have prepared 7 end of summer car care tip and it includes:
- Replacing your car’s windshield wiper blades.
- Checking and testing all the lights.
- Inspecting all the tires including the spare.
- Testing the car battery.
- Checking and monitoring the level of all your car’s fluids.
- Checking and testing the air conditioning, heater, and defroster.
- Checking everything under the hood.
This list of 7 end-of-summer car care tips can help you prepare for the colder weather and if you want to know more, continue reading, we’ll tell you everything you need to know!
7 End-of-Summer Car Care Tips: Why is Car Maintenance Important?
Before we go through each of the 7 end-of-summer car care tips, we need to understand why performing car maintenance or car care is important. Buying a car is not cheap. In fact, it is considered a big investment. Since it is not cheap, you would want to use it for a long time. It is for this reason why you need to take your car’s regular service and maintenance seriously.
Here are the benefits of having regular car maintenance.
● Added safety for you and your passengers.
When you regularly have your car maintained, you will be able to detect early problems, even the minor ones, and have them repaired immediately. This can help you prevent car breakdowns or having to deal with other unpredictable car problems while you are driving that can leave you stranded.
When your car breaks down at night or some place isolated, it can be dangerous for you and your passengers. Doing regular maintenance lowers this risk since your car will always be at its top condition. You can have peace of mind while driving knowing that your car won’t fail you.
● It extends your car’s life.
If you strictly follow the regular maintenance or service set by your car’s manufacturer, which can be found in your owner’s manual, it can help prevent a lot of problems from occurring. Aside from the added safety for you and your passengers, regular maintenance also adds a lot of years to your car.
If your car is well maintained, with all the minor problems corrected, you can trust that you won’t have to deal with very expensive repairs in the years to come, especially on your car’s major components such as the engine, drivetrain, transmission system, or cooling system. Doing preventative measures before a problem becomes worse can help extend the life of your car as well as reduce the unnecessary wear and tear of your engine and its other components.
● You will save money in the long run.
Some car owners don’t usually have their cars regularly maintained since they are trying to save some bucks. Although it might seem that you are spending much on having your car maintained, the truth is, regular maintenance and service don’t cost that much compared to the repair bills you will most likely pay for when one of your car components breaks due to lack of maintenance. It can be very expensive.
Know that when one of your car components like the engine or transmission fails to function or starts showing some problem, it is not without a reason. That is why it is important to have your car regularly checked to make sure that you will be able to detect early signs of problems before they develop to something worse.
You will be able to detect minor issues such as leaks, cracks, or excessive wear and tear during the check ups or tune ups and if you have these problems addressed immediately, you won’t have to deal with very expensive part replacements for a long time, thus, making you save money since the repair costs will be reduced.
7 End-of-Summer Car Care Tips: What are the Car Maintenance Tips?
We have gone through some of the reasons why regular car maintenance is important. However, you need to know that the changing of the seasons can have an impact, positively or negatively, on your car. When the seasons change, the demands placed on your car will also change. That is why, depending on the season or the weather conditions your car will be driven in, the specific car care it needs can vary. You might have heard of the phrases “summer car care” or “winterizing your car” before.
However, we will not be talking about winter or summer car care tips since we will be discussing our 7 end-of-summer car care tips. Our 7 end-of summer car care tips include:
1. Replacing your car’s windshield wiper blades.
The heat of the summer tends to harden and crack your car’s wiper blades. That is why one of the 7 end-of-summer car care tips is replacing your windshield wiper blades. This should be done since you need unobstructed visibility in the colder months. You should inspect your wiper blades to make sure they are not cracked, damaged, or leave some streaks across your windshield.
If your wiper blades are damaged and are no longer capable of clearing your windshield properly, you need to replace them before the rain or snow starts to show up. This makes sure that your visibility stays clear while you are driving since it is important for your safety. It is recommended that the windshield wiper blades are being replaced every 6 months. You also need to make sure that you have a sufficient amount of windshield wiper fluid in the reservoir of your car.
2. Checking and testing all the lights.
All of your car’s lights are important. You need them so you can see as well as to make you be seen, especially when there is rain, fog, or snow which can reduce your visibility while driving. So to prepare for the changing of seasons, you need to check all the lights of your car’s lights. Make sure that all of them are functional and replace the bulbs, if needed,
You need to check and test your headlights and taillights, including the brake lights, high beams, and fog lights. Look closely for burned out light bulbs and make sure that the headlights are directed at the right angle and the visibility is good. You should also check for fogging on the headlights. You need to clear the lenses when you spot some build up residues on them or when they start to look yellow.
3. Inspecting all the tires including the spare.
Have you taken long trips or have driven your car a lot of times this summer? There is just something about summer that people want just to take long trips and enjoy a great adventure. That is why inspecting all of your car’s tires, including the spare, is included in our list of 7 end-of-summer car care tips.
You should inspect all of your tires including the spare tire. One thing that you can check is each tire's air pressure. You can do this by using a pressure gauge. Correct inflation is needed for safe and efficient driving. Overinflated or underinflated tires can lead to a number of problems so you need to make sure that your tires are properly inflated. You can check your owner’s manual to know the correct psi for your tires.
Another thing that you should also inspect is your tire’s tread depth. You need to check it to make sure that your tires can still provide the needed traction to get you through the colder season. You can do a simple penny test to check your tire’s tread depth. You can do this by inserting a penny into the tire’s tread groove with Lincold’s head facing you and upside down. If you can see Lincoln’s head after inserting the coin, then it means that your tire is due for a replacement. You should replace them before winter starts.
You should also look for any signs of wear and tear on your tires such as bald spots, uneven wear, or bulges. If you spot any signs of damage to your tires, you should have it checked since it can be an indication of alignment issues or suspension problems. This can also be an indication that your tire is already due for a replacement.
4. Testing the car battery.
Your car needs a healthy battery for it to work. Without a good, working battery, you won’t be able to start your car. That is why testing your car battery is a must and is included in our 7 end-of-summer car care tips. Car batteries usually last for around 2 to 5 years and if you are not sure how long your battery has been serving you, you can check if it is already due for a replacement. You can check the date found on a sticker or a stamp on the car battery that indicates its year and month. The first number you will find is the last digit of the year and the 2nd letter is the month, with January as A and L as December.
You can also check your car battery’s voltage as well as check the battery connections. You need to make sure that all the connections are clean, tight and free of corrosion. Extreme weather conditions can be hard on the battery so it is important to check the battery as well as your car’s charging system before the colder season starts.
You can also clean your battery to get rid of the resistance between the battery and the rest of your car’s electrical system like the blower and starter. You need to make sure that everything is working well to ensure that you won’t get stranded somewhere due to a dead battery.
5. Checking and monitoring the level of all your car’s fluids.
Cars have a lot of fluids and each of them have an important role to play in the overall function of a car. You need to check and monitor the level of these fluids. The engine oil tends to boil and evaporate when exposed to extreme summer heat. So you need to check it and top it off if needed.
You should also check the other fluids such as the coolant, transmission fluid, brake fluid, and power steering fluid. Top them off if necessary. If you are not sure what the right level of these fluids are, you can check your owner’s manual. Aside from checking the level, the coolant’s strength and consistency should also be checked. This is because coolant loses its protective capabilities over time and it won’t be able to handle colder weather when this happens. If your coolant looks sludgy, murky, or dirty, you might need to have it flushed.
6. Checking and testing the air conditioning, heater, and defroster.
When you have been driving your car all summer, your air conditioning system must have worked extra hard to keep you cool while you are driving. That is why you need to check your air conditioning system since you might not need it to keep you cool during the colder season, but you will need it for defogging your windshield and front windows. You should also test your heater and defroster and make sure they are functioning properly.
7. Checking everything under the hood.
You can check everything under the hood, even just some basic visual inspections to make sure everything is working properly. Look for any signs of leaks, loose connections, or cracks. You should also check and adjust serpentine belts and v-belts and replace them if necessary.
Regular maintenance set by your car manufacturer is there to help keep your car in good condition and help prevent major problems and breakdowns. If you follow the recommended service and maintenance schedule as well as our list of 7 end-of-summer car care tips, your car will be able to enjoy and use your car longer and it will also perform better and keep you safe.