Posted by Jessica Fernandez on Thu, Jun 01, 2017 @ 03:12 PM
The adventure you’ve been waiting for all summer has arrived — your family’s annual road trip. The kids are squirming with excitement (and so are you) as you pull out of the driveway and make your way to Big Bear Lake … until you realize your brakes are failing, your engine is overheating and the tires are worn out. This calls for a visit your local auto repair shop.
Summer is a popular season for road trips, and to prevent road trip stallers, Repairpal.com has helped us curate a list of summer car maintenance techniques that will help you (and your car) stay one step ahead of the heat.
Cooling Maintenance and Preventing Viscosity Breakdown
Maintaining a cool engine is a vital element of summer driving. “Viscosity breakdown is a common problem with engines during the summer months,” says Repairpal.com. An over-heated engine can lead to the oil breaking down and the loss of lubrication. The resulting friction cause wear and expansion on the parts, leading to eventual engine seizure.
Maintenance checks to prevent engine overheating include flushing the radiator and inspecting all rubber radiator hoses. Leaky radiators and/or hoses that are dry and cracked should be removed and replaced.
Keeping Track of Tire Pressure and Tire Treads
The most important component to car safety on long trips is having reliable tires. Air pressure should be checked and filled to the recommended pressure rating. This is available on the sidewall of your tires and is measures in pounds per square inch (PSI). Checking the tire treads is also critical, which can be done with the coin test. A tire gauge and 12-volt portable compressor are recommended additions to abate tire maintenance on the long road trips.
Be Prepared: Check, Change and Pack Car Fluids
Before a long journey, there are a few fluids that should be checked and changed. These include the engine oil, transmission fluid and the brake fluid. Repair.com also recommends that drivers “pack extra fluids with the repair kit and tools.” The extra fluids include engine oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, radiator coolant (i.e. antifreeze) and a bottle of water.
Checking the Brakes and Changing the Pads
To ensure stopping power and promote optimal handling, be sure to have the brake system inspected before the trip. When pads are worn thin, they typically make a squealy noise due to unwanted metal-to-metal contact, indicating that a change is needed. Repair.com advises “checking the pads, changing the fluid and bleeding the brakes lines.”
Air Conditioning, Wipers and Air Filter
To stay cool on your trip, checking all components of the AC system is important. The AC compressor is connected to belts and pulleys on the engine. If necessary, have the auto repair shop inspect the compressor and recharge it with the proper propellant.
If the belts make noise while the engine is running, have them inspected for damage. Additionally, checking the wipers and windshield wash to remove road dust and the inevitable bug crashes on your window.
Summer Road Trip Ready with help from the Auto Repair Shop
After checking off all the items in this post, you’ll be ready to pack your bags and round up the kids for a road trip they’ll never forget!
The above checks and repairs can be completed by DIYers, but they are best addressed during a full inspection by a local garage. These professionals have the experience, tools and parts that foster a safe road trip.
In the event the needed repairs or parts become costly, CrossCheck stands behind the auto repair shop with a successful payment solution that is a win-win for everyone. The Multiple Check program is simple to use, offering up to four check payments deposited over a 30-day period. The auto repair shop is guaranteed payments, while the client can pay for their repairs without applying for credit and paying interest. Download our free guide to learn more.
Tags: Auto Repair