The heat affects your car in many ways, including reduced performance and increased component wear and tear. Atlanta, Georgia, gets notoriously hot in the summer months, and the impact of the heat can be intense on our vehicles. The good news? There are preventative steps you can take now to help combat the brutal temperatures. Here’s how to prepare your car for the summer heat and avoid potentially costly damage.
Be Mindful of Tire Pressure
Tire pressure and air temperature a directly connected. You may know that tires lose pressure when temperatures drop, but the opposite is also true. It is estimated that for every 10-degree rise in temperature, your tire pressure will increase by 1 PSI. This may not seem like much, but during a heat wave, your tire pressure may increase by 5 PSI! This will make your tires overinflated and could cause them to wear faster. Keep an eye on your tire pressure before heading out on those unbearably hot days.
Keep Fluid Levels Full
Components in your vehicle get hot enough as is through regular use. Hot weather takes its toll on those components and the fluids required to keep them running. Don’t make things more complicated than they need to be for your vehicle. Ensure your engine oil is clean and topped off, and check your transmission, power steering, brake, and windshield wiper fluid levels.
Monitor Battery Life
Cold weather is an enemy to the car battery and can severely degrade its lifespan. Batteries often fail during hotter months, though, as they have been weakened by the winter and now can’t handle the heat. A quick inspection every month or so can go a long way in improving the life of your car battery. Remove any corrosive buildup on the terminals and clamps, and make sure the connection is tight.
The average life of a battery is 3 – 5 years. You can always have your battery tested at our shop to determine how long it will last.
Examine All Belts and Hoses
The heat will cause hoses and belts to crack and wear out faster than usual. Look for signs of cracking, soft spots, and other indicators of wear, or at the very least, keep an ear out for unusual squealing or streaking noises. Having worn-down belts replaced early can help reduce the chance of a breakdown later.
Examine The Performance Of Your AC System
How long does it take for your car’s AC system to kick in? There’s nothing worse than being stuck in that dreaded Atlanta traffic without air conditioning. Maintaining a proper cabin air temperature reduces fatigue and makes your drive comfortable. Your air conditioning system uses refrigerant to cool down your car, but if your system doesn’t have refrigerant, it can’t do its job.
Scheduling an AC System Refrigerant Refresh with McCullough NAPA will ensure that your system has enough refrigerant to cool your car. If we notice any leaks, we will point them out to you and recommend the best way to repair them so that you stay cool in the summer heat.