Summer is a time for vacation, fun, and having your car looking its best. The last thing you want to do during the summer when you are on vacation is spending hours working on your vehicle. This article will discuss some of the must-have tune-ups for the summer. Before you know it, you will be spending less time in the shop and more time enjoying what should be an awesome summer.
- Coolant System Tune-Up
First up, we have our coolant system tune-up. All automotive owners can benefit from this if they don't already have one scheduled. If your car does not have an engine bay heater (or one that only blows hot air), you should consider adding one. You need to use a high-quality product like ThermoCool or Thermochill. A properly installed engine bay heater will eliminate most issues with cooling systems, keeping internal temperatures down and helping prevent overheating, which could lead to catastrophic damage to any components inside your engine bay.
- Air Filter Replacement
It is very important to replace your air filter in the summer months as the hot weather causes your air filter to become clogged quickly. The air filter removes harmful particulate matter, dust, pollen, etc., from the air before entering your engine bay. Any dirt stuck on the surface of your air filter can cause the heat exchange process to work inefficiently, causing higher operating costs. An efficient air filter is a key to running a cooler vehicle during the summer at lower fuel consumption.
- Oil Change
One of the most overlooked things during the summer is maintaining oil levels, so make sure to fill up your car with good old-fashioned oil. Many great oils available today can offer amazing protection against breakdowns caused by extreme environmental conditions. Most modern engines require synthetic oil for optimal performance and long-term reliability. So before heading off to the beach, remember to change that oil. Mobil 1 or Castrol GTX is the perfect option for those needing reliable motor oil. With either one, you will find yourself avoiding frequent oil changes and saving money in the long run.
- Spark Plug Changes
During the warmer months, spark plugs can suffer from excessive carbon fouling. By replacing these items in the middle of the year rather than waiting until later, you can reduce engine wear and extend the life of your spark plugs.
- Brake Fluid Replacement
You can never go wrong with fluid replacement. Brakes tend to operate differently under warm weather conditions versus cold weather, so monitor your braking system throughout the summer. Also, check all fluids such as power steering fluid, brake master cylinder fluid, and an antifreeze solution. Remember, a full quart of each fluid will take care of most brake problems.
- Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
Pay attention to your tire pressure because as the mercury rises, so do your tires. Make sure to check once every ten days at the least but ideally once per week. Even after winter tires have been applied, it's still smart to test them regularly. If the readings are low, apply more air to them accordingly. TPMS systems can range anywhere from $50 to $300, depending on the model you choose.
- Check hoses and belts
During the warmer seasons, we often neglect our hoses and belts. It's easy to keep them clean when it's not so hot outside, but they tend to get dirty faster and eventually leak during the summer. This can lead to many issues, including coolant leaks that drain your radiator dry over time. Always perform regular checks on the hoses and belts around your vehicle and if they start to look worn, give your mechanic a call and have them inspected. Also, look for any signs of stress when the rubber meets metal. These areas are known to experience premature failure during the summer months.
Summertime is here, and it's time to work extra towards ensuring your car is ready for the season ahead. The summer is also a great time to repair minor body damage like small scratches or dents. Lastly, a quick tune-up will ensure your engine operates at peak efficiency when the temperatures rise.