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lady sitting in car in bright sunshineThe summertime months typically mean more time to travel. Whether you’re planning a summer vacation, traveling on the weekend to a summer cabin, or just spending your evenings out enjoying the summer nights. It’s summertime and that means it’s very hot out there, Those hot summer months can take quite a toll on your vehicles. The exterior and interior, as well as the mechanical functions, can all be affected as the weather heats up. There are some things to look out for and some preventative measures you can take to keep your vehicle functioning safely and looking its best all year long.

 

 

 Interior areas affected

As the sun and heat are coming through your car windows it can cause discoloration as the bright sunlight fades your dashboard and seats over time, which can lead to cracked dashboards and premature aging of the interior cloth or leather.

  • A protectant can be applied to most interiors to protect it from the sun. Leather seats will benefit from a leather conditioner made for automobile interiors.
  • Tinted window glass will also help to cut down on some of the sun damage to your interior materials.
  • Park your car in a shady place whenever possible.

Exterior areas affected

Your paint and clear coat are at risk of fading as your vehicle is exposed during the long summer days. The sun’s rays and extreme outdoor heat can also cause tire problems. As the temperatures change so does the air pressure in your tires.

  • Consider a high-quality protectant wax to help protect your paint job from the damaging effects of the strong summer sunshine.
  • Keep tires inflated following recommended pressure guidelines by manufacturer, always refer to your owners manual. Improperly inflated tires can lead to damage or even a blowout while driving.

Checking your tire pressure is one of the most important things you can do year round, but especially during the summer months. Checking your tire pressure doesn’t always require a professional. A simple tire air pressure gauge, available at most auto parts stores, is good enough for the job.

Mechanical functions at risk during hot weather

The heat from the summer sun can affect mechanical functions of your vehicle including, your battery, cooling system, and engine. There are some precautions you can take to keep your car’s mechanical parts at a lower risk of damage from the heat.

Battery

Your battery is very vulnerable to damage in the hot summer months. Just imagine the temperatures under the hood. If you’re feeling the heat, your car battery is too.

  • Get your car battery checked regularly. Some older batteries need to be topped off with fluids. Make sure you check it frequently during the summer months.
  • Check your car battery periodically for bulging or cracks. If you see anything out of the ordinary, ask your mechanic to look at it.
  • Remove corrosion that you see on your battery terminals. You can remove it by rubbing the terminals with a cloth or by using a brush.

A/C System

We rely on the A/C in our vehicles to keep us comfortable as we travel to our summer getaway vacations. Your A/C system will benefit from some routine maintenance to keep it working throughout the summer.

  • Have your air conditioning serviced regularly. Replacing the cabin air filter can also improve cooling and prolong the life of your A/C system. A/C work can be very costly, so catching a problem early can save hundreds of dollars in repairs down the road.
  • Examine belts, check for any leaks, and clean out any clogged vents that may be preventing the system from functioning properly.

Before you find yourself out and about enjoying the season think of your summer habits. Does your car spend long hours in the sun in your sunny driveway or parking lot? Prepare your car for a safe and enjoyable summer of driving. By inspecting your vehicle’s cooling system, tires, batteries, and air conditioning, you can expect a more pleasant, safe, and reliable warm weather driving experience. Always remember to never leave children or pets unattended in any vehicle in the heat. The professionals at Smiley’s Glass are available to help with all of your automobile glass needs during every season.

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