Beating the Summer Heat: Texas Car Maintenance Tips
Tip 1: Regularly Check and Maintain the Cooling System
The cooling system is your car’s lifeline; ESPECIALLY during the summer months in Texas. Maintaining your vehicles cooling system includes:
- Ensuing that the radiator is filled with the appropriate coolant mixture and checking for any leaks.
- Inspecting the hoses for signs of wear and tear, and replace them if necessary.
- Cleaning the radiator’s fins.
- Clearing any debris from the front of the radiator and/or a/c condenser to allow efficient cooling.
- Flushing and replacing the coolant according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Keeping the cooling system well-maintained will help to prevent your engine from overheating and protect critical components from damage. Remember: the cooling system doesn’t just keep you from melting, it keeps engine components at proper temperatures too. While you can handle being hot and uncomfortable, your vehicle cannot.
Tip 2: Monitor Tire Pressure and Condition
Extreme heat can affect tire pressure and accelerate tire wear. Keep a close eye on tire pressure by checking it regularly, especially before long trips.
Underinflated tires not only decrease fuel efficiency but also increase the risk of blowouts. On the other hand, overinflated tires can reduce traction, lead to uneven wear and don’t have as much traction, especially when the roads are wet. Inspect the tires for any signs of cracking or bulging, which can be exacerbated by the hot weather. Consider rotating your tires periodically to ensure even wear and maintain optimal performance. We recommend rotating your tires every 6 months or 6,000 miles.
Properly inflated and well-maintained tires will improve fuel efficiency, provide better handling, and enhance overall safety during the Texas summer.
Tip 3: Protect the Interior and Exterior
The scorching sun can wreak havoc on your car’s interior and exterior — but it doesn’t have to.
Invest in a quality sunshade to protect the dashboard, steering wheel, and upholstery from excessive heat and UV rays. Applying a protective coating or wax to the exterior of your car can shield the paint from fading, cracking, and oxidation caused by the intense sunlight. Regularly wash and wax your car to remove dirt, debris, and bugs, which can cause damage if left untreated. Furthermore, consider using a leather conditioner or fabric protectant to prevent cracking or fading of seats.
By taking preventive measures, you can preserve the aesthetics and longevity of your vehicle.
Tip 4: Maintain the Battery
High temperatures can accelerate battery fluid evaporation and corrode battery terminals.
Check the battery’s fluid level and top it up with distilled water if needed, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Inspect the battery terminals for any signs of corrosion and clean them using a mixture of baking soda and water.
If your battery is more than three years old or shows signs of weakness, consider having it tested and possibly replaced. Taking care of your car’s battery will ensure reliable starts and prevent unexpected breakdowns during the scorching Texas summer.
Surviving the Texas Summer
Surviving a summer in Houston requires extra attention to some vehicle care. By following these top Texas car maintenance tips, you can minimize the risk of breakdowns, enhance safety, and prolong the life of your vehicle. When in doubt, focus on the big four: cooling system, battery, tires, and protection from the UV rays.
Remember to refer to your vehicle’s owner manual for specific maintenance guidelines and consult a professional if you encounter any issues. By prioritizing car maintenance, you can confidently navigate the scorching Texas summer and enjoy a trouble-free driving experience.
Need some help getting your car ready for Summer? Contact Northwest Auto Center of Houston today at (281) 894-8880. We can help keep your car in top shape!