|Summer's heat, dust, and stop-and-go traffic, will take their toll on your vehicle. Add the
effects of last winter, and you could be poised for a breakdown. You can lessen the odds of
command a higher resale price, too!
Some of the following tips are easy to do; others require a skilled auto technician.
Air Conditioning - A marginally operating system will fail in hot weather. Have the system
examined by a qualified technician. Newer models have cabin air filters that clean the air
entering the heating and air conditioning system. Check your owner's manual for location
and replacement interval.
Cooling System - The greatest cause of summer breakdowns is overheating. The cooling
system should be completely flushed and refilled about every 24 months. The level,
condition, and concentration of the coolant should be checked periodically. (A 50/50 mix of
anti-freeze and water is usually recommended.) DIYers, Never remove the radiator cap until
the engine has thoroughly cooled! The tightness and condition of drive belts, clamps, and
hoses should be checked by a pro.
Oil - Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual-more often (every 3,000
miles) if you make frequent short jaunts, extended trips with lots of luggage, or tow a trailer.
Engine Performance - Replace other filters (air, fuel, PCV, etc.) as recommended-more often
in dusty conditions. Get engine driveability problems (hard starts, rough idling, stalling,
diminished power, etc.) corrected at a good shop.
Windshield Wipers - A dirty windshield causes eye fatigue and can pose a safety hazard.
Replace worn blades and get plenty of windshield washer solvent.
Lights - Inspect all lights and bulbs; replace burned out bulbs; periodically clean dirt and
insects from all lenses. To prevent scratching, never use a dry rag.
Tires - Have your tires rotated about every 5,000 miles. Check tire pressures once a month;
check them while they're cold before driving for any distance. Don't forget to check your
spare as well and be sure the jack is in good condition. Examine tires for tread life, uneven
wearing, and cupping; check the sidewalls for cuts and nicks. An alignment is warranted if
there's uneven tread wear or if your vehicle pulls to one side.
Brakes - Brakes should be inspected as recommended in your manual, or sooner if you
notice pulsations, grabbing, noises, or longer stopping distance. Minor brake problems
should be corrected promptly.
Battery - Batteries can fail any time of year. The only accurate way to detect a weak battery
is with professional equipment. Routine care: Scrape away corrosion from posts and cable
connections; clean all surfaces; re-tighten all connections. If battery caps are removable,
check the fluid level monthly. Avoid contact with corrosive deposits and battery acid. Wear
eye protection and rubber gloves.
Emergencies - Carry some basic tools-ask a technician for suggestions. Also include a first
aid kit, flares, and a flashlight. Consider buying a cellular Phone keeping Your Vehicle in
Tune with the EnvironmentCar care is definitely a win-win situation. Besides helping the
environment, a properly maintained and operated vehicle will run more efficiently, will be
safer, and will last longer-up to 50% longer, according to a survey of ASE-certified Master
|Getting Your Vehicle Ready for Summer
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|M & M Repair and Towing Inc.
|(719) 846-8546 / 1-800-862-8546