1. Check your Coolant
Often known as radiator fluid, or antifreeze, coolant fluid dumps the heat your engine produces away
from the vital machinery. It’s not a bad idea to check in on your coolant every couple months, but as
we head into the hottest part of the year you better be sure it’s topped off. Blowing a gasket because
you never checked the level of fluid in your radiator is one of the most easily avoidable headaches, and
one of the ones that can cause the most damage.
2. Measure the Tire Pressure
Air in tires expands and contracts with the rise and fall of the temperature. It also tends to escape over
time, especially in older tires. If you haven’t checked them for a couple months, by the time that
summer rolls around you are probably somewhere between three and six pounds per square inch off
where you want to be. Improperly inflated tires can reduce gas millage and road traction. They also
wear out faster and in extreme circumstances can burst long before they should have given out.
Air is free from most gas stations, and many even have free tire pressure gauges. This time of year you
should be able to make good use of them.
3. Get your Air Conditioning Working
Yes, we all know that air conditioning guzzles fuel like little else. But how many of you know that,
depending on the car you are driving, it actually becomes more efficient than an open window at
around forty five miles an hour? In Florida, an air conditioning system is more than a luxury. Your air
conditioning can keep you from showing up at the big meeting already soaked in sweat, or keep you
out of trouble during a heat index warning. Checking out your AC system and taking any necessary
steps to keep it healthy will pay you back tenfold.
4.Cover up in the Sun
You know what we have a lot of here in Florida? Sun. Sun and heat. Neither of those is particularly
good for your car. Consider picking up a car cover or at least window shades as we head into the
hottest part of the year. They will protect your interior and paint from fading and UV damage. A cover
and an awning can also reduce the initial engine temperature of your car and help prevent overheating.
5. Spring Cleaning
We understand that things tend to collect in cars. It’s a personal space that travels everywhere that you
go. But that doesn’t mean the mess has to stay there. Clean out all the extra odds and ends you’ve
picked up in the last couple months and make sure you have what you need for roadside emergencies.
If you’re still carting around your friend’s free weights, random paving stones, or that set of tools your
uncle chuck gave you last November, you might want to take them out. For every hundred pounds of
weight in the car you can lose as much as two percent of your maximum fuel efficiency.
And replace some of what you do take out with things that are useful. Maybe not every driver needs a
set of road flares, a couple bottled waters, and jumper cables. But when you’re in a situation where you
do, you will feel a heck of a lot better than the guy who has to go without.
6. Spring Maintenance
Summer is the season for vacations and road trips. Make sure your car’s innards are up to the task. Oil,
air filters, and oil filters all need changing on a regular basis. Rotating your tires is also good, ensuring
they wear at an even rate. A mechanic can keep an eye out for this and anything you missed, and
qualifying Car Credit customers should be sure to take advantage of their limited maintenance
agreements when applicable.
But anyone who needs to pick up a vehicle this summer should stop by Car Credit Tampa Bay. All
vehicles on our lots go through a multi-point service inspection [link to form] to ensure that they’re
ready for whatever the season throws at them. So get out there and enjoy summer. If you need us,
we’ll be waiting at the lot.