As we head into summer here in North Carolina, it’s important to get your car ready for warmer weather. You can use our top summer car care tips to ensure your vehicle is ready for a summer road trip or just normal trips to work, school, or local places. We’re happy to help with any of your car care needs here at Kernersville Auto Center.
Basic Summer Car Care Tips
Regardless of where you’ll be driving this summer, it’s important to maintain your vehicle well all year long. In the summer, you’ll want to pay special attention to certain car needs. Here’s our quick checklist to make sure your car is ready for summer:
- Check your air conditioning. You may have not needed it since last year. Make sure it is working well so you aren’t stuck without it when temperatures really begin to soar.
- Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Tire pressure can change when the outside temperature changes. Additionally, tires do lose pressure over time. Not only can we fill your tires if needed, but we can also switch you to nitrogen-filled tires so they don’t lose pressure as quickly.
- Set aside time to wash your car in our Xpress Turbo Wash. Our automated car wash means you can keep your car clean and protect the paint without fighting the hot sun doing it yourself at home.
- Double-check all your fluid levels and schedule an oil change if needed. Temperature changes can cause lower fluid levels. Coolant is especially important in the summer, as you don’t want your vehicle to overheat. Don’t forget to check your windshield washer fluid.
- Have your battery tested. High temperatures in the summer can result in reduced battery life. Without a battery, you’ll be sitting on the side of the road in the summer heat, which definitely isn’t a good place to be!
Other Maintenance Tasks
Of course, you’ll also want to take care of other car maintenance as needed. If you’re not sure what your vehicle needs, come in for an engine tune-up. Our certified mechanics will review your vehicle maintenance records and help you set up a maintenance schedule to follow. This includes not only oil changes, but also things such as tire rotation, air filter changes, brake checks, and other preventative maintenance. We’ll help you keep your vehicle in good working condition.
You can find even more summer car maintenance tips here.
Get Ready for Your Summer Road Trip
If you intend to head off on a road trip this summer, there are a few extra precautions you should take to make sure your vehicle is ready. In addition to your normal maintenance and the tips we listed above, follow these steps to get your car in tip-top shape for a longer trip:
- Visually inspect all hoses, belts, filters, and lights. We would be happy to help with this task if you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself. Our mechanics can explain in simple terms what’s going on under your hood.
- Clean out your car and pack an essentials car care kit (see below). Make sure you have plenty of water for your entire family.
- Review your vehicle insurance policy and update it as needed. If you will be traveling, it is a good time to make sure you have AAA or a roadside assistance program through your insurance, just in case.
- Print out maps of where you’ll be going. Yes, most people have GPS on their phones these days, but in the event that you lose your phone, run out of battery, etc. it helps to have a paper backup! Store these in your glove compartment, seat pocket, or somewhere else easy to grab should you need them.
- Get any simple vehicle repairs done that you have been putting off. Little repairs can turn into big vehicle repairs if you drive your car a long distance without getting it fixed.
When in doubt, bring your vehicle in for summer maintenance at our shop. We’d be happy to look it over to ensure it’s ready for a long drive.
Essentials Car Care Kit
We recommend keeping a kit in your car that has all the essentials in case you do break down while on the road. Whether you are planning a road trip or will just be driving around the North Carolina Triad area, here’s what to keep in your car care kit:
- Jumper cables in case you need to jump your battery
- Water and some ready-to-eat food such as granola bars
- A first aid kit that includes bandages, antiseptic cream or spray, and other items you might need if you are injured
- Paper towels or rags to clean up any spills
- A flashlight if you break down after dark
Also make sure you have your insurance and registration information, as well as your car’s owner manual. Keep these items in a sealed plastic baggie to protect them.
FAQs about Summer Car Care Tips
If you have questions about any summer car care tips we’ve shared, you can call or stop in any time. We’d be happy to answer your questions! Here are a few questions we hear often:
Do I really need to change my oil so often?
We recommend sticking to your manufacturer’s recommendations. If you use premium synthetic oil, you can typically change it less often. Here’s more information about synthetic versus convention oil and how to tell if you need an oil change.
What should I do if I break down during a road trip?
If you break down in the Kernersville area, stop in to see us! We are happy to help anyone from out of town and can get you back on the road quickly. If you are elsewhere when you break down, look for trustworthy mechanics who are certified like the mechanics here at Kernersville Auto Center.
How can I protect my car from the sun?
Our car wash has a wax feature. This can help protect your paint during the hot summer months. If you can, park in the shade whenever possible.
Do you have other questions about your summer vehicle care? Contact us any time for help.