In the heat of summer, many families will be traveling all across America. This means it is important to take certain precautions in order for your car to run properly and to save money at the pump.
First thing to focus on are your Tires:
- Tire pressure can change due to an increase in temperature.
- Under or over inflated tires increase the risk of accidents, blowouts and flats, and will result in you spending more money at the gas station.
- Properly inflated tires increase your fuel efficiency by three percent!
- Make sure you change out your winter tires. These tires are heavier and wear faster which will lower your fuel efficiency, especially on long road trips.
Hot weather isn’t the only thing that can overheat your car. On long road trips, heavy driving can cause your engine to overheat as well. It is important to give your car a thorough systems check and the best place to start is your Oil:
- Many oil change specialists recommend that you change your oil every 3,000 miles.
- To check your oil, let your car run for a few minutes then park on a flat surface.
- Using the dipstick, look for the quality of the oil and the amount of oil on the stick.
- The oil should have a brownish yellow color and there should be no grime, or dirt on your dipstick.
After checking the oil, the next thing to check is the Coolant and Radiator:
- Cars are designed to run hot, but only to a certain extent.
- When checking your coolant levels, the general rule of thumb is to flush your radiator and add new coolant every two years.
- For summer driving, coolant should be added as a 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and water (There are even premixed coolants so you don’t have to bother with measurements).
Finally, especially on scorching hot days, a very big component that must function so you can comfortably travel is the Air Conditioning:
- Air conditioning should be serviced every 3 years or as needed.
- The most common malfunction in air conditioning systems is a low level of refrigerant.
- If your car was built before 1994, you must have your refrigerant checked out by a licensed professional because certain refrigerants have been outlawed by the Federal Government.
Happy summer driving!