Beat the Heat with These Summer Car Care Tips

Sunlight and the hot summer temperatures can cause problems for engine fluids and degradable materials. These simple care tips will help keep your car's systems running smoothly throughout the summer months.

Coolant Levels
Check the coolant level frequently during intense heat to ensure that your car's engine is properly cooled. The right amount of coolant is critical to your car's operation. A drop in coolant level can cause overheating and severe engine damage. Keep the tank filled to the level marked on the tank. Only use the type of coolant recommended by your car's manufacturer.

Your car's air-conditioning system must work extra hard in mid-summer heat. Have our auto technician check the refrigerant level and re-charge the system if necessary before embarking on long road trips.

Tire Pressure
The heat also affects tire pressure, so make sure that your tires are inflated to the level recommended by that manufacturer of the vehicle. This will help to prevent overheating of the tires and possible blowouts. Remember never over-inflate tires. Also check for cracks and debris embedded in the tire that can cause problems on summer road trips.

Batteries can suffer even more from intense summer heat than they do from frigid temperatures. Remove built-up corrosion from battery terminals. Battery cables can degrade in hot weather, so check for cracks or wear in the rubber. If the battery is more than 3 years old, have it tested and replace if necessary to prevent breakdowns away from home.

Car Interior Parts
Sunlight and hot temperatures can also threaten your car's interior. The interior of your vehicle can reach 160 degrees on a warm summer day. Sunlight can degrade vinyl seats and plastics on the dashboard, console, doors and other surfaces. Subsequent cooling by air-conditioning can cause a heat-cold cycle that takes a toll on interior parts, leading to peeling, cracking and breakage.

Try parking in the shade or using sun visors to keep your car's interior cool. Not only will this keep the interior cooler for your comfort, it will keep your air-conditioning system from working so hard and will help to protect interior surfaces.

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