Summer is almost here and as we all bask in the warmer weather, and look forward to holidays, beach weather and fun in the sun – have you considered your car? Depending on where in Australia you live, the summer heat can be scorching. Prepare your car for summer with some preventative maintenance, to avoid breaking down and getting stuck on the side of a very hot road.
Do a general all-over check for any maintenance items that may have slipped in the winter. Check your tyres, lights, oil, coolant and transmission fluid. If your last service was a while ago, consider booking your car in for a thorough maintenance check if your next service is not yet due.
Give your car a clean – to remove any trace of grime that may be lingering as a result of rain, mud and so on. A DIY wash, vacuum and polish will ensure that your car feels good to drive – or if you prefer, book your car in for a car cleaning service.
Check your wiper blades, and change them if they are worn. Check your wiper fluid levels and fill the reservoir. You can buy wiper fluid which does a better job than plain water, at your nearest auto parts store.
Heat related car problems are seen mainly in the car’s cooling and electrical systems. Inspect the hoses and drive belts in your car and look for cracks, wear and tear. Check the level of coolant (when the engine is cold), and have a look at the external surface of the radiator core, checking for insects and other blockages, and clean them out by hosing down. Do not brush the core as this could damage the cooling fins.
If your car does overheat while driving – stop immediately as driving on could damage the engine. Pull over immediately if you see steam or smoke coming from the engine. Check your instruments – regularly, and be alert for any unusual high or low reading.
At the start of summer, make sure that your car’s air-conditioning is working efficiently. Run it for several minutes to check that it is blowing cold and that all vets are working. If you are in any doubt, rather have it checked by a qualified professional. Remember that effective air-conditioning will reduce driver fatigue by keeping the interior of the car cool in the heat of summer.
Check your owner’s manual and if your car is due for a service, book it in.
Happy summer motoring!