It might be hard to picture right now, especially. This means it’s time to start thinking about having your vehicle ready for warmer weather if you live from the Midwest or Northeast, but spring is right around the corner.
The wintertime can be hard in your car, and also this year was especially bad in many parts of the country. The frigid temperatures and harsh road conditions require a serious toll on your ride. So it’s important to manage some basic maintenance issues before they develop into dangerous and expensive problems.
Here are six things that you ought to check given that the polar vortexes are waning. Accomplishing this can save you time and expense down the line.
1. Examine your wheel alignment
Proper wheel alignment allows your car to handle properly. Furthermore, it means that your tires won’t wear out prematurely. It might be smart to visit a local alignment shop if you notice your vehicle constantly pulls to one side or doesn’t drive straight ahead once your steering wheel is centered.
A $75 alignment can improve your car’s handling, and prevent you from having to spend hundreds on a premature set of tires.
2. Look at the tire tread
Checking your tire tread is something you want to do several times per year. It’s important to make sure that you possess adequate tire tread, which the wear is even. To check tread depth, simply place the edge a penny in the tread for each tire, near the center. You likely need new tires if the tread doesn’t cover any percentage of Honest Abe’s head. Also, if there is excessive wear about the edge of any tires, it may be time for any new set and a four-wheel alignment.
3. Make sure your battery is strong
Cold temperatures is particularly harmful for car batteries. If you live in the harsh climate, becoming much less reliable as a consequence, your battery can deteriorate very quickly. If needed, replaced, should your battery is far more than four years old and often takes a couple of seconds to start your motor, you ought to take it for your local auto parts supplier to get tested and.
4. Top off your coolant
As temperatures rise, it’s important to ensure your car’s engine is getting adequately cooled. If the coolant light on your own dash has been illuminated or if perhaps you simply haven’t checked the coolant level in a while, unlock the hood and make sure the fluid are at the proper level. Most cars have a fluid level gauge, so consult your owner’s manual to discover how to check the level on your particular model. Ensure you only open the coolant cap as soon as your car is cool. Opening the cap when your car has been driven can be very dangerous.
5. Examine your brakes
Ensure your car has enough remaining brake life, before taking long road trips during the summer and spring. In the event the brake check lamp is illuminated on your instrument cluster, or if your car’s braking is noisy or rough, then there’s a good chance you want new pads. If you’re unsure, you can sometimes observe the level of your brake pads by merely looking involving the spokes of your own wheels. If you think your brakes may be worn-out, find a trustworthy mechanic to accomplish a thorough inspection.
vacuum and Clean the inside of your car. Cold temperatures has likely led to a buildup of gunk and miscellaneous things that you promised you’d clean once the weather got warmer. That time has come. Lug the vacuum to your garage, driveway or parking space and give the inside a nice big cleanse. You’ll feel a whole lot better as soon as you do.
Next, move on to the exterior of your car. Make sure that you have soap that’s specifically meant for cars and never wash your car in direct sunlight if you’re washing it yourself. Use a hose with a mist-spray nozzle to wet on the car and wash away debris. Using a bucket with tepid soap and water, sponge down all areas of your car gently, rinsing the sponge frequently. Do the fender and bumper areas last. Blast the undercarriage and wheel wells with the hose to get rid of as much salt buildup that you can. Then, dry the vehicle lightly with a chamois or natural-fiber drying cloth.
Stay away from automated, commercial car washes on busy, winter-thaw days. Many of them recycle their water to the level that they’re washing having a salty solution.