There is a definite chill in the air now as the days continue to get shorter. As you settle into your autumn routine, make sure to take some time now to take care of your car before winter arrives. Here are some fall car care tips to help prevent some major breakdowns when the weather really gets cold.
- Read your owner’s manual. Your owner’s manual includes a list of routine maintenance you should have done on a regular basis. If you’ve missed some of this maintenance, get your car back on track.
- Resolve performance issues. If your engine just doesn’t drive the way it should or you experience hard starts, rough idling, or stalling, get these issues resolved now as they will intensify with cold weather.
- Keep your tank full. A fuel tank that is kept full helps prevent moisture from forming in the fuel lines. That moisture can freeze in the winter, so try to keep your tank full.
- Check your HVAC system. Make sure your heater and your air conditioner are in good working order. Your A/C still plays an important role in the colder months as it removes moisture from the air via the defroster.
- Inspect your lights. As the days get shorter, you’ll be using your lights more. Make sure all of your exterior lights are working and angled correctly.
If you want to get your car ready for colder weather, schedule an appointment with College Chevrolet Buick.
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Most drivers know about checking engine oil, but there are several different fluids your engine needs to keep running smoothly. Here are some car fluids you should check regularly to maintain your car’s health and functionality.
Transmission fluid is one of the most important fluids in your car, as it lets the gears run smoothly. While when checking your engine oil the car should be cold, transmission fluid is best checked when the car is running. When you check transmission fluid, your concern is the quality, not the quantity. If transmission fluid is low, there is a problem with your car. If it’s dirty, it needs replaced, but this shouldn’t be necessary more than every 50-100 thousand miles.
Coolant is another important fluid to replace, as it keeps your car from overheating. This is easy to check, as you can just glance at the fill line in the clear tank. Check your brake fluid when you do an oil change. If it’s brown instead of golden, it needs replaced. You should also keep your power steering fluid levels high, but you’ll most likely never need to replace it.
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While you were driving, you slowly noticed (or perhaps quickly noticed) that the needle on your engine temperature model has just bolted upwards. What do you do now? Here’s a quick guide on what to do if your engine overheats:
- First of all, evaluate your surroundings and safely pull over.
- Cautiously lift the hood of your car, allowing some airflow to cool off the hot contents.
- Look around, but whatever you do, do not touch or remove the radiator cap, which would likely result in serious injury.
- Next, call a professional and wait for help. It is not safe to drive with an overheated engine.
- In the meantime, try to figure out what went wrong. Perhaps you are out of coolant, or one of the cooling system’s fans is broken.
In general, the summer seems to be the worst time of the year for engines overheating. Do you have any other tips? Let us know in the comments.
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Whether you drive long commutes that make it feel like you live in your car or go short distances around town – no one is exempt from the occasional flat tire or dead battery. Are you prepared for when it happens to you? Here is a brief list of essential items to keep in your car for those “just in case” scenarios.
To be ready for a flat tire, be sure to keep a spare tire, car jack, and wrench located in the trunk of your vehicle. You may also want to consider keeping a tire inflator and sealer as well. In case you’re out of practice, here’s a brief brush-up on how to change a car tire.
A dead battery: it’s happened to the best of us. You go out to start your car and realized you left your lights on…oops! To get that battery up and running again, be sure to have a set of jumper cables. Here is a refresher video on how to jump your car battery.
It is also a good idea to always keep a first aid kit in your vehicle as well.
We at College Chevrolet Buick encourage all of our readers to double check your vehicles and make sure you have these essential items, and if you have any questions, we’d be happy to help!
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National Car Care Month–every April–may be coming to an end, but that’s no reason to stop spending extra careful attention to the care and maintenance of your vehicle. Keep your car in top-notch condition all season long with these spring car care tips from College Chevrolet Buick.
- If you haven’t been to the auto shop for a solid check-up lately, be sure to do so. Especially after the harsh winter months, your car can always benefit from a tune-up.
- Be sure your tires have enough tread and are inflated to the right level. If your tires are worn down, you are putting yourself at risk of hydroplaning.
- We’ve all heard the term “spring cleaning.” Why not use the beautiful weather as an excuse to give your car a thorough cleaning, on the inside and the out?
- Check all of your car’s fluids, such as the engine oil and windshield wiper fluid. You won’t want to wait to find out until it’s too late.
Do you have any other spring car care tips? Let us know your ideas in the comments.
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