summer car maintenanceMore people take to the road during the summer than at any other time of year.  These trips can be simple day trips, weeklong family vacations, or long cross country trips.  While your mind is on soaking up the sun or finding that perfect vacation spot, car maintenance can quickly fall to the bottom of your priority list.  However, without proper maintenance, you can find yourself stuck on the side of the road with car problems.  To help make sure your summer trips go smoothly, here are some basic maintenance items that you should take care of at the beginning of the season.

Check your tires at the beginning of the summer vacation season to make sure that both the tread and the pressure are fine.  If your tread is worn down, your car will be unprepared to handle the road and weather conditions that you will encounter, which can lead to you losing control of your vehicle.

Check your brake pads and fluids to make sure that everything is at the proper levels.  Replace any parts that appear to be worn down or not up to your manufacturer’s recommendations.  Brakes are one of the biggest safety features on your car and you want to make sure that they are in good condition before heading out on any trip.

It may seem like a mundane task, but it is important to make sure that all your headlight bulbs are working properly.  Not only is it unsafe to drive with a burnt out bulb, it’s also illegal.  Keep your bulbs shining brightly in order to prevent accidents and traffic tickets.

Radiator Fluid
The summer is a good time to flush your radiator fluid.  The coolant in your radiator breaks down over time and can corrode your radiator, leading to big problems.  Flushing your radiator is a great proactive step against more costly radiator repairs.

The harsh winter weather can lead to battery corrosion, so check your battery to ensure that it is in good condition.  It’s a good idea to not only check the condition of the battery itself but also the posts and cables to ensure that you won’t have any start-up problems over the summer.

Windshield Wipers
While this may not seem like a huge safety precaution, having functioning windshield wipers during a summer storm is essential to your overall safety.  The winter weather can be extremely rough on your wiper blades, so it’s a good idea to start off your summer with new blades.