Tasks to Perform on your Vehicle this Fall

When you own a vehicle, you will want it to operate as efficiently as possible. This includes going to regular maintenance inspections. If you notice an issue between inspections, make sure to schedule an appointment so we can inspect it for you. There are also some things you can look to ensure they are working efficiently.

Oil

Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual more often (every 3,000 miles) if your driving is mostly stop-and-go or consists of frequent short trips. If the oil needs to be often on a regular basis, make sure to bring it in so we can inspect it for you.

Cooling System

The cooling system should be flushed and refilled as recommended. The level, condition, and concentration of the coolant should be checked periodically. The tightness and condition of drive belts, clamps, and hoses should also be inspected.

Heater/Defroster

The heater and defroster must be in good working condition for passenger comfort and driver visibility.

Windshield Wipers

Replace old blades. You can purchase rubber-clad (winter) blades to fight ice build-up. Stock up on windshield washer solvent you’ll be surprised how much you use. Also remember to carry an ice-scraper.

Battery

The only accurate way to detect a weak battery is with professional equipment. But do-it-yourselfers can do routine maintenance. Scrape away corrosion from posts and cable connections; clean all surfaces; re-tighten all connections. If battery caps are removable, check fluid level monthly.

Lights

Inspect all lights and bulbs; replace burned out bulbs; periodically clean road grime from all lenses with a moistened cloth or towel. To prevent scratching, never use a dry rag.

Tires

Worn tires will be of little use in winter weather. Examine tires for remaining tread life, uneven wearing, and cupping; check the sidewalls for cuts and nicks. Check tire pressure once a month. Let the tires “cool down” before checking the pressure. Rotate as recommended. Don’t forget your spare, and be sure the jack is in good condition.

Emergencies

Carry gloves, boots, blankets, flares, a small shovel, sand or kitty litter, tire chains, a flashlight, and a cell phone. Put a few “high-energy” snacks in your glove box.

Posted in Auto Repair, Car Care Tips, Fall inspections, General Car Maintenance