With the summer season in full force, the extreme heat has arrived as well! Extreme summer heat can take a large toll on your vehicle and its performance. Therefore, just like during the cold winter months, it’s important to make sure your vehicle is prepared for the hot summer months. The following are some things you can do to your vehicle to add a bit more protection, to ensure that your vehicle runs smoothly during the inevitable heat waves this summer season.
Air Conditioning (A/C)
The first thing you should do is check to make sure your A/C is in good working order. If the A/C is blowing warmer air than usual, it should be checked. It’s imperative that your vehicle has enough refrigerant and that there are no leaks in the system. Be sure to inspect your A/C system so you won’t be stuck in a heatwave with a broken air conditioning system.
Top Up The Coolant
During the summer months, your vehicle's engine is already hot, which results in the coolant having to work extra hard to ensure that the vehicle doesn’t overheat. Be sure that your vehicle’s coolant system is properly checked out and flushed out if necessary. Do not open the radiator cap if the vehicle is still hot. You should wait at least an hour after the vehicle has stopped before attempting to open the cap.
Protecting Your Car From the Heat
Most don’t realize that your vehicle’s upholstery, dashboards, and steering wheels can start to deteriorate if exposed to too much sunlight and heat on a regular basis. There are many products that can provide a protective layer to vinyl or leather surfaces. Keeping your vehicle shiny and clean during the summer months will reflect more of the sun’s rays away from your vehicle, while a dirty vehicle will absorb more heat. By adding a coat of wax to your vehicle when you wash it, will also help to protect your vehicle’s paint from extreme heat.
Park in the shade
During the hot summer months, consider parking your vehicle in a location that can provide lots of shade, so their vehicle will not be exposed to the sun as much. Alternatively, as many neighborhoods do not have large trees to provide shade to your vehicle, try to find a street where shade is provided by buildings. A windshield sunshade should also be used, as it can help reduce the heat in your vehicle. Parking in the shade will not only protect your vehicle from the sun’s rays, but it will also make it more tolerable to enter your vehicle on those sizzling summer days.
Open Your Vehicle’s Windows
Be sure not to leave your children or pets inside a parked car during the hot summer months. If the windows are closed, the temperature can rise dramatically in a short period of time, which almost acts like an oven - making it very dangerous to those in the vehicle. If you do need to leave passengers in the vehicle, be sure to open up windows all the way.
Is your vehicle energized?
Check Your Vehicle’s Battery
Most people think vehicle batteries are vulnerable only during the cold winter months. However, your battery needs help during the hot summer months as well! Heat and vibrations are detrimental to your vehicle’s battery. While there is not much you can do about the heat, you can minimize or eliminate vibrations by securely tightening the battery under the hood of your vehicle. It’s also important to have your battery checked regularly if it’s over three years old to see how much change is left in your vehicle’s battery.
Pressurize Your Vehicle’s Tires Appropriately
If you are driving with under-inflated tires during the hot summer months, there is a greater chance of them causing damage to them. During the summer months, this is typically caused by extreme temperatures causing the pressure of the tires to rise which can lead to overheating, affecting the braking, handling, and the fuel economy of your vehicle.