Tips to Avoid Warm Weather Car Issues

July 13, 2018

 

During the Summer months anyone would rather have fun over attending to car maintenance. Taking time to prevent minor issues from becoming major car trouble can save up to $1,200 a year in emergency repairs. Keep you and your loved ones safe by following these tips to bypass the common warm weather car issues without breaking a sweat.

 

1. Overheating Engine

 

Although vehicles have a coolant system that actively cools down the engine, the hot weather means that it has to work even harder which can show any system weaknesses. For example, if you have a slight weak spot in a deteriorating seal, this can quickly turn into a disastrous leak.

 

A common mistake is to only occasionally top off the coolant, just because there is not a leak yet does not mean that there is not a leak.

 

To avoid overheating check the cars coolant at the beginning of every season. If you are new to this, refer to the vehicle handbook. 

 

 2. Tires

 

The summer is when most people take their long car trips. Due to the intensive nature of a long distance car journey, lurking car problems can become major troubles.

 

Tire blowouts are very common. This can often be avoid in preparation by checking the tires before setting off. Trailer tires should not be ignored either.

 

High temperatures do not usually cause fresh tire failure but usually aggravate any existing tire damage which is made worse by under inflation. Under inflation increased the level of friction when it comes into contact with the road which generates more heat and the weak spots do not stand a chance.

 

If your tires have any cracks in its rubber or low pressure then it could signal the tire has a puncture or needs replacing. The best way to prevent tires from failing is to check the pressure before any long journey. See recommended tire pressure in vehicle handbook.

 

3. Worn Clutch

 

A vehicle clutch will not last forever and a key sign of it wearing is a burning smell. Hot weather conditions contribute to the clutch wearing, especially when combined with the stop-start nature of slow traffic.

 

Any clutch issues will quickly be highlighted if towing a caravan or trailer. Combine this with hilly terrain and you will quickly feel a clutch deteriorating.

 

If your vehicle shudders when you pull away and lift the clutch,

it is starting to wear and it is time for repair.

 

4. Battery Problem

 

Vehicle batteries can often become faulty if they come under an increase in stop-start activity which is common on journeys that do not involve much freeways.

 

The vehicle battery is put under more strain with each additional connected device, phone or tablet. Symptoms of a battery running low are slow to start and dimmer lights.

 

If you already know your battery is aging then you should think about replacing it before a long summer road trip. It is recommended to replace a car battery every three years. If you can not change your battery at the three year mark, consider purchasing a car     

battery charger.

 

5. Alternator

 

The alternator is closely connected to the battery, and any issues you have with the battery are usually caused by increased demand on the alternator. This is usually caused by having many power draining devices connected. Mixing many connected devices with hot summer months equals more possibility for problems.

If the alternator red warning light is illuminated on the vehicle dashboard, have serviced immediately.  

 

6. Low Oil Pressure

 

As you know, engine oil has to work to circulate through the internal vehicle system. As the temperature gets higher, the oil gets hotter and becomes more of a watery texture.

 

If the oil is to watery then it can not lubricate the components effectively which increases wear within the engine and eventually leading to failure. 

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