June 6, 2014

Summer Driving: Time for a Car Inspection!

Overheating Car Summer in Chicago is finally here, and we all need to be conscious of what the weather change can do to our vehicles. It's important to prepare your car or truck for the hot weather headed our way. This means going beyond a simple coolant check; doing a thorough car inspection can mean the difference between cruising comfortably down the highway, or being stuck on the shoulder with steam pouring from the engine. Don't let this happen to you! Follow these steps and you'll be in the clear.

1.) Cooling System - It's made up of coolant, the radiator, cooling fan, hoses and belts, water pump and heater core.

Each of these items needs to be checked for leaks or other damage. One example is to check the radiator core for rot after a long winter of driving on salted roads. If left alone long enough in the heat, this rot will continue through the core piping and cause the coolant to leak out and the engine to overheat. And no one wants that.

Every car's radiator should contain antifreeze, even in the long hot summer months. This is because antifreeze is full of corrosion inhibitors, and, antifreeze has a higher boiling point than water, which means it will keep the car's engine cooler longer than water. Have some extra antifreeze on-hand, just in case you need to fill it up.

2.) Tires - Check all four, including the spare.

It is extremely important to ensure that your vehicle has the correct air pressure in all of your tires, especially when driving on hot pavement. You can find the recommended tire pressure for your car or truck on a sticker on the inside of the driver's side door, or in the owners manual given to you at the time you purchased the vehicle. Always fill to the recommended tire pressure, NOT the maximum.

Also, make sure the tread is in good shape. The penny trick is the best way. Turn the penny upside down so that Abe Lincoln's head is inside the tire tread. If the tread is covering his head or reaches to the top of his hair, the tread is acceptable. If it's any lower, however, it's time to replace those tires.

3.) Oil Change - Be sure to get an oil change! Engines need plenty of lubricant when it's hot, and old oil becomes sticky and can clog the lines. Changing the oil every 3,000 miles is the norm, but if you'll be doing lots of summer driving, change it more often.

DRIVE THE SPEED LIMIT: You may not get there as fast, but you'll save your engine a lot of heat.

IF YOUR CAR IS OVER-HEATING: Crank up the heat! Turning the heat up on the inside of the car will draw heat away from the engine, cooling it enough to get you to some place safe. If the needle continues to plunge, stop driving the car and seek help.

Following these summer driving tips can mean plenty of long and happy road trips for you and your automobile.

Didn't pass your summer driving car inspection? Stop in to Titan Auto Sales, reference this blog post, and receive 10% off your service!

No comments:

Post a Comment