Dehydration, heat stroke, serious sunburns — we are all accustomed to the dangers of hot weather presents for our bodies. However, how often do you stop and think about how soaring temperatures impact your automobile? Before the mercury rises this year, use these tips and tricks to stay on top of the weather and other summertime issues. Every preventative measure taken will help keep your car running smoothly on the road and help you avoid major breakdowns and potential accidents due to lack of maintenance.
Check your tire inflation
Car tire inflation rises and falls with temperature. In the winter, cold air can lead to underinflation. If you added a few pounds of air to your tires in the last cold snap, it may be time to bleed some air off before the next heat wave. This is important because overinflated tires will wear out more quickly and, potentially, increase your likelihood of facing a hazardous driving situation due to a failing tire. Use an air gauge to measure inflation. If it’s above the recommended PSI printed on your tire — generally 32 to 35 PSI for a passenger car — let some air out and measure again.
Check your oil between oil changes
If you already get your oil changed at prescribed intervals, congratulations are in order. You are investing in the long-term health of your vehicle. Consider taking it one step further during the summer months by checking your oil in between changes. If your engine is older or not running optimally, it’s working even harder in the hot weather to stay cool and power your AC. If your oil dips too low, serious engine problems and roadside breakdowns can follow. Regular peeks at the oil level also allow you to check for signs of debris or discoloration on the dipstick. Dirty oil can indicate a mechanical problem you need to get checked as soon as possible.
Keep other fluids up-to-date
Summer brings changes beyond temperatures. Increased bird activity and an abundance of insects can lead to windshield spatter of varying types. Keep your windshield wiper fluid topped off so you can clean up in a pinch. Coolant also works double-time in the hot weather, so check your antifreeze’s quality to determine if a change is needed. Overheating your car can lead to a loss of power — a dangerous situation on a busy highway.
Stay safe on the highway this summer using the above safety tips, and visit Young Insurance Associates Inc online or in person in Raleigh, NC to discuss your automobile insurance needs and receive a quote for a new policy before hitting the road this summer.