When temperatures soar during the summer months, it’s important that your vehicle is ready for the heat. Prevention is the best way to ensure that your car performs as it should. Here are five tips for protecting your car during hot weather.
Check Your Battery
Scorching hot days aren’t friendly to your car battery. So before summer weather hits, have your battery tested to ensure it’s in tiptop shape. Battery fluid evaporates quickly when the weather is hot, so keep an eye on the battery terminals and wipe away any corrosion that’s built up.
Keep Fluids Topped Off
During a heat wave, it’s especially important to check your fluids since they help to cool down the engine. This includes motor oil, brake fluid, transmission fluid and power steering fluid. If these fluids are low, it’s harder for heat to be carried away from the engine’s components.
Has your engine coolant been replaced lately? Check your owner’s manual to see if it’s time for the coolant to be changed. Otherwise, make sure it’s filled to the appropriate level.
Avoid Direct Sunlight
When you’re looking for a parking place, try to find a shady spot or a parking area that’s underground or shielded from direct sunlight.
And leave your windows down an inch or two. You can purchase tinted visors that deflect light and make it less obvious that your windows are down, for security purposes.
Use a Sun Shade
It’s a good idea to keep a windshield shade on hand for times when you can’t avoid parking in the sun. Windshield shades not only keep the interior of your car cool, but they help to prevent the damaging effects of sunlight on your car’s interior. If you let your car bake in the sun, you could end up with an unsightly dried-out, cracked dashboard.
Keep Your Vehicle Clean and Protected
Use a detailing product on your dash for protection and to minimize glare. Seat covers are useful for keeping your car seats cool. If you have leather seats, keep them well-conditioned during hot weather to prevent cracks.
Sunlight and hot temperatures can fade your vehicle’s exterior. A wax job is a great way to protect your car from the sun’s damaging UV rays.
Tire, Hose and Belt Maintenance
Underinflated tires can be a problem on hot days when the pavement is scorching, potentially causing a blowout. Hot weather also makes hoses and drive belts more likely to fail, so inspect them to ensure they’re in good condition with no signs of cracking or other deterioration.