There’s little doubt that we’re going to be ready for an adventure, but you will need to make sure your car and tires are just as ready as you. Use the car care checklist below before you go to ensure that your ride is road-ready for travel this summer.
Most people believe that the cold is harshest on car batteries, but it’s actually the heat that really drains the power out of It.
Inspect all four tires including the spare for any gouges, cuts, or bulges in the sidewall. To check the tire’s tread depth, simply insert an upside-down quarter into the grooves, and it’s time to buy new tires if you can see the top of George Washington’s head. Tire pressure should always be checked after the car has been idle for a while and the tires are completely cool. Inflate them to vehicle manufacturer’s specified pressure listed on the sticker located on the driver’s side door frame or inside the manual.
If you ever notice a grinding noise or can sense a vibrating feeling whenever you hit the brakes, take your car for a brake evaluation. The service professional will inspect the pads, rotors, boots and drums in your braking system, as well as any evidence of brake fluid leakage.
Ensure that A/C coolant will be able to handle the extra heat it will absorb to ensure that it is still completely protecting your engine. Have all of your belts and hoses inspected as well because a blown heater hose is the number 1 reason that cars break down on the road.
Make sure that all critical fluids are full and ready for safe vehicle operation. Check the levels are correct for engine oil and coolant, as well as the fluids for brakes, differential, transmission, and power steering. When you are adding fluids, always use recommended products that meet manufacturer specifications. It’s also worth noting that some newer vehicles with electric power steering may not use fluid, and some cars will have a sealed automatic transmission which doesn’t have a dipstick.
The air conditioning system should be tested for optimal efficiency, which includes the compressor and cooling fans. Take the vehicle for a short test drive running while the air conditioner is on and if there is a decrease in the capacity for cooling, take it to a repair shop for thorough testing and servicing. You’ll need to make sure that your car can be cooled properly when the heat outside is over 90 degrees this summer.
While you’re waiting for COVID-19 updates on travel advice, get your car ready to go so that you can hit the road the moment restrictions are eventually lifted this summer.