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The summer months are the most popular for road trip vacations and present car care concerns not present other times of the year. Before the weather heats up or you embark on your annual cross-country family drive, make sure your car is ready for summer by following a few simple tips.
Get a Tune-up
The first step to getting your car ready for summer is to stop by the mechanic for a maintenance check and tune-up. A basic tune-up includes a check of your car’s air filter, motor oil and other essential engine fluids. Ask to have your car’s windshield wipers checked as well. Many drivers overlook the wear and tear of wiper blades until they are caught in a heavy summer rainstorm. Routine maintenance checks are relatively inexpensive and can prevent costly and inconvenient summertime breakdowns.
Check Tire Pressure
After making sure your engine is functioning properly, check the air pressure and tread wear on your tires. A small tire pressure gauge is inexpensive and easy to use. Make sure each tire has the recommended air pressure. Air pressure which is too low results in excess tread wear, decreased gas mileage and poor wheel alignment. Over inflated tires are more prone to popping, contributes to bumpy rides and also negatively affects gas mileage.
Clean Out Your Car
Extra weight from unnecessary items left in your car decreases gas mileage and forces your engine and tires to work harder. An important step in getting your car ready for summer is to spend some time cleaning out the vehicle. Remove trash, forgotten items you stowed and any winter related supplies which are no longer needed as the weather changes. Not only will this quick cleaning project help your car run more efficiently it will provide needed cargo space for any planned summer road trips.
Emergency Roadside Kit
At the beginning of every season, especially as the hot and humid summer weather start to occur, you should check and restock your car’s emergency roadside kit. Make sure you have plenty of bottled water, first aid supplies, a basic tool kit and jumper cables. This simple safety precaution can keep a momentary pause in your travel plans from escalating into a bigger issue.
Summer is a fun and popular time for travel but the hot and sunny weather can put extra stress on your car. Prepare your vehicle by following these simple and easy steps.