Because seasons are somewhat blurred in our area of the country we don't have to worry as much about winterizing our vehicles as do car owners in colder climates. For that reason, we recommend thorough checks at least twice a year to make sure your vehicle remains reliable and safe. April and October are good times for the following:
- Have your cooling system cleaned and flushed and new antifreeze/coolant put in. Ask for a thorough cooling system check and leak test. We can put the system under pressure and visually look for leaks.
- Inspect radiator and heater hoses. If any of them show signs of cracking, rotting or softness replace them even if they're not leaking yet.
- Check all fan belts for cracks or wear. Replace if necessary.
- Check your windshield wipers for wear. Replace if needed.
- Replace your air filter. This can increase your gas mileage instantly.
- Have your brakes and tires checked. Replace any worn parts in the brake system and any worn tires.
- Make sure your spare tire has air in it, and you know how to safely use your jack and lug wrench.
- In the fall, make sure your heater, defroster and rear defogger are working properly. In spring, make sure your air conditioner blows cold before hot weather arrives.
- Have your battery and charging system checked for optimum performance. Don't take any chances here.
- Keep basic emergency equipment in your vehicle, including jumper cables, a flash light, extra batteries, flares, a shovel, first aid kit, basic hand tools, blankets and a cell phone.
- Keep your gas tank and windshield washer fluid reservoir full.