Day-to-day driving in winter conditions can do a number on your car. Fortunately, spring is on the horizon, with summer not far behind. But with the changing seasons, your car can endure different types of wear and tear. Avoid car problems or expensive repairs down the road. Go through this essential car maintenance checklist and prepare for your upcoming adventures.
Check Your Battery
The winter cold can strain car batteries. In addition, many people don’t drive as much during winter. If that’s the case, take time to inspect your battery. For example, check the connections for corrosion or dirt buildup. Clean up any dirt or corrosion, and look for frayed or damaged cables. Finally, look for leaks and make sure the battery isn’t loose.
Fluid Fill Up
Even if you regularly check your oil, make it a habit to check all your fluids seasonally. Some seasons are harder on cars than others. As a result, you may need to change your oil sooner than usual after a rough winter. Also, checking other fluids like your coolant, transmission fluid, and brake fluid is essential. Make a list of all the fluids your car uses and check them all, including your wiper fluid.
Tire Test Time
Road salt, potholes, and other things can increase the wear and tear on your tires. In addition, many people opt to use seasonal tires. As spring approaches, check your tires for pits, cracks, slow leaks, and other issues. If you had winter-specific tires, it might be time to change to an all-season tire. Also, take time to check your tire pressure. And a mechanic can align and balance the tires after a winter of snow drifts, rocks, and potholes.
A Visual Inspection
After winter driving, it’s smart to look at the outside of your car. For instance, you may have buildup underneath the vehicle. Over time, this buildup can cause corrosion. A visual inspection can also spot burned-out headlamps or taillights. Check that your high beams and turn signals are working correctly and that there are no loose parts. You can also clear out any leaves or debris that can pile up in crevices along the hood or trunk.
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Listen to Your Car
Sometimes your car will look fine but sound strange. Many times, mechanics listen for specific sounds to diagnose problems. For instance, a failing belt may squeak, and worn brakes can start to grind. You can also listen for any difference in how your engine sounds. If you hear a sound that doesn’t seem right, you should make an appointment with your mechanic.
If you do your essential car maintenance checklist and find an issue, we’re here to help. At Bob Brady Honda in Decatur, Illinois, we take vehicle maintenance and safety seriously. From quick oil changes to significant repairs, you can rely on the experience of our service team. Make an appointment today for all your maintenance needs.
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