Hard to believe but we need to start thinking about change of the seasons. Summer is quickly coming to an end and it is important to do a seasonal check up on your car for you and your family safety.
Fall car maintenance checklist:
√ Car Battery – with the weather getting colder that is important to make sure that your battery is fully charged. Make sure that your battery is in good shape with no corrosive cables or terminals and they fit snugly. If you are going to be putting the car away in storage or limiting the amount of mileage you put on your car, you might wish to consider a trickle charger to keep your battery fully charged. You might also wish to consult an auto technician to double check your battery for its fitness for all batteries to lose strength over time.
√ Engine hoses – be sure to inspect the cooling system hoses for leaks, loose clamps or cracks. If when you squeeze your hoses, you may find that they are either extremely spongy or brittle and will require replacement.
√ Drive Belts – important to visually inspect your drive belts for fraying or cracks. Be sure to look at both sides of the belt for it is the grooved underside where most of the wear-and-tear happens.
√ Tires and Brakes – we will start getting into times where road conditions can be quite poor, check your tires for wear-and-tear, put on snow tires if applicable, or have your car inspected by experts. Most reputable tire and brake shops will be willing to inspect your car free of charge. Now before the weather put you in an unsafe road condition, it is a good time to replace your tires and/or brakes if needed. Note: as the temperature drops so does the air pressure in your tires. Your auto maintenance manual let you know how much your tires should be inflated to. Don’t forget to check your spare tire to make sure that it too is in perfect shape.
√ Coolant levels and air filter – check the coolant levels in your car. You will also need to be sure that you have a 50/50 solution of coolant to water ratio, you may need to add antifreeze to your system. There are inexpensive testers available at your local auto parts store. Your air filter might also need to be replaced, so that it can function optimally to help you save money on your gasoline consumption.
√ Transmission, power steering and brake fluids – either by yourself or with the help of a professional check that all fluids in your car are at or above the minimum safe levels described in your car owner’s manual.
√ Lights – take a moment and walk around the outside of your car and check the operation of all your car’s lights. Make sure you do not have any bulbs out in your headlights, emergency flashers, brake lights or parking lights. You should replace all nonworking bulbs and make sure all your lights are clean. Improve visibility will help keep you safe.
√ Heater/Defroster – make sure you check that they are working, especially in your front and rear window defrosters. With the cold weather coming, it is easy without proper heating and defrosting systems to have fogged or iced windows. Driving with fogged up windows is asking for an accident to happen. If necessary, you might need to repair or replace your systems.
√ Carwash/detail – a clean car can help you spot any potential problem areas on your vehicle. It also will help you to retain the value of the car.
With all these car maintenance items checked, you and your car should be set the season ahead. Another important item that you should maintain in your car’s trunk is an emergency road kit – which should include:
Emergency Road Kit:
- Snow shovel and brush
- Bag of sand, kitty litter or salt
- Window washer solution with antifreeze
- Flashlight with extra batteries
- Dry clothes including gloves, hats and/or blankets
- Jumper cables
- Paper towels
- Ice scraper
- First aid kit
- Basic toolbox including screwdrivers, pliers and adjustable wrench
- Car charger for your cell phone
- Important phone numbers for your insurance agent, roadside assistance provider and doctor.
We at Brownell Insurance Center hope that you have a very happy and safe change of the season. Now might also be a good time to double check if your auto insurance is providing you with the best coverages for the least expense. Free quotes and important insurance advice is always available with us. Give us a call today to ensure your peace of mind! Our agents are happy to any questions or concerns you may have.
Brownell Insurance Center – 603-437-1992
Information for this blog from: