1: Check your fluids! This is one of the most critical and most overlooked car care routines. The various fluids in your vehicle lubricate, cool, and perform other vital functions to keep it running and driving. We recommend taking a few minutes to check under the hood and make sure your fluid levels are where they need to be. This goes double for the oil, coolant and brake fluid.
2: Check your tires! Your cars tires are super important and shouldn't be overlooked. They affect your braking ability, handling and overall vehicle safety. Use a gauge to check your tread depth of the outer, center, and inner tread of the tire. If any of these read 4/32", we recommend replacing the tire. A reading of 2/32" or less indicates a safety hazard and the tire should be replaced immediately. Also, check your tires air pressure. You can find out how much air should be in your cars tires by looking in your vehicles manual. It's important to have the right amount of air in your tires. As too much air can mean a blowout and too little will make your tires wear out faster. For our fellow Rochesterians, we recommend investing in a quality set of snow tires to help you navigate the winter roads.
3: Check your lights! Soon we'll all be driving to work in the dark and coming home in the dark. It's important to see and be seen. We recommend getting a friend or spouse to help you check the exterior vehicle lights and make sure they're all working as they should. The interior lights you should be able to check yourself. Replace any bulbs that aren't working. If you need instructions on how to do so, just check your vehicles manual. If it's something you can't do yourself, or just don't feel comfortable, give us a call. We'll be happy to help you!
4: Check your wiper blades! Fall means rain, leaves, and sometimes snow. It's important to make sure your wiper blades are in good shape to keep your windshield clear. If your wipers are streaking or broken, replace them. Consider checking your washer fluid as well when checking your wipers. It's important to have so you can wipe the road salt away. Some brands make freeze resistant washer fluid for winter. Consider filling your reservoir with some when temperatures start to go below freezing.
5: Check your brakes! Stopping is important! Your brakes are critical! You should be checking them or having them checked twice a year to ensure they're in top shape. If you check them yourself and find 4mm of friction material left, we recommend replacing them. If you find 3mm or less left they should be replaced immediately, as that's a safety hazard. If you don't feel comfortable checking your own brakes, or don't know how, give us a call. We'll be more than happy to assist you!
6: Make sure your heater works! Most people don't use their heater very often in the summer. However, as it gets colder and the nice weather leaves us behind, you're going to want to stay warm while you drive. Automotive heating systems rely on hot engine coolant. So if your heater is blowing cold, it could mean you have a problem. If you have the know-how, you can diagnose it yourself, but we recommend giving us a call to let a professional handle it.
7: Take care of any outstanding maintenance! Check your vehicles owners manual for when the manufacturer recommends you should perform routine services. If your car is due, or overdue for service, take care of it now. Neglecting routine maintenance is the most common cause of breakdowns and big repair bills. Also, address any known problems your vehicle is having. If your car has a leak, rattle, squeal, grinding, or any other issues that you've been putting off, put them off no longer. Ignoring problems now can lead to bigger problems later. Also, you don't want to have a breakdown and get stranded in the snow. Fix it today to avoid headaches tomorrow!