Summer Tips to Protect your Car

So long winter, hello spring and summer! We can officially say goodbye to the winter blues. Remember, those gloomy freezing days full of snow? Well, thank goodness they are gone.

Surely our vehicles went through some rough times during the winter months. Now that warmer weather is here, it's time to get our cars back into shape for the summer.

The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence recommends:

  • Drivers read the owner's manual and follow the recommended service schedules.
  • Flush and refill the cooling system according to the service manual's recommendations.
  • The level, condition and concentration of the coolant should be checked periodically. Let the engine cool down before removing the radiator cap.
  • If you are not a do-it-yourselfer, look for repair facilities that employ ASE-certified automotive technicians.
  • The tightness and condition of belts, clamps, and hoses should be checked by a qualified auto technician.
  • Have a marginally operating air conditioner system serviced by a qualified technician to reduce the likelihood of more costly repairs.
  • Change the oil and oil filter as specified in owner's manual. (Properly dispose of used oil.)
  • Replace other filters (air, fuel, PCV, etc.) as recommended.
  • Check the condition of tires, including the spare. Always check tire pressure when the tires are cold.
  • Inspect all lights and bulbs; replace burned out bulbs.
  • Replace worn wiper blades and keep plenty of washer solvent on hand to combat summer's dust and insects.

These small and preventive maintenance checks can help save you the aggravation of a stalled and overheated car in the highway in the heat of summer. It'll also help your vehicle last longer and stay efficient thus saving you're a few extra bucks!

Summer Tips Ana Gonzalez Ribeiro, MBA
Personal Finance/ Business Writer
Member of American Society of Journalists and Authors