Summertime in Texas can be tough. Knowing how to keep your body cool and hydrated is essential for good health as the temperatures rise, especially if you spend any amount of time outside. But the summer heat isn’t just tough on people, it can be tough on your car or truck as well. Staying on top of vehicle maintenance is a must during the hottest months of the year.
Summertime Car Hazards
Some common dangers to your vehicle by hot summer weather include:
Your tires are full of air and hot temperatures makes air expand. If your tires are worn thin, the chance of a blowout is increased. On top of that, road construction is prevalent in the summer, which leads to puncture hazards on streets and freeways. To avoid tire failure, especially during heat waves, be sure to regularly check your tires for wear, holes and nails.
In direct sunlight, the inside of a locked car with the windows up can reach a temperature of 150 degrees, and that level of heat can be murder on your car’s interior. The heat can cause dashboards to fade and leather to crack. If possible, try to park your car in a covered area to reduce exposure to the sun. Investing in a sun shade for the windshield or even a full car cover will also offer a huge measure of protection. In a pinch, a spare towel or blanket covering the dash, steering wheel and seats will do.
During the summer months, it’s important to keep your engine cool. Some signs that your engine is in danger of overheating include:
- Temperature gauge needle is in the red
- Puddles of sweet-smelling fluid under the car (indicating a coolant leak)
- Wears and cracks in fan belts or radiator hoses
- Air conditioner is not operating a full capacity
If you notice any of these signs get your car looked at professionally immediately. Serious engine damage can occur from out of control heat.
Keeping Your Air Conditioning Running
Air conditioning in your car can be the difference between a pleasant drive and minor torture. Here’s how you can help keep your vehicle’s air conditioning system from breaking down:
Check Your A/C
Once the weather begins to warm up, test out your air conditioning before it gets too hot. Run the A/C for a long time to feel if the air is consistently cool. Lukewarm or barely-cooled air might be due to a low refrigerate charge in the system.
Rinse the Condenser
The condenser in front of your radiator is an important part of the airflow system in your car. Make sure that driving hasn’t clogged it with leaves, debris or insects. Have an auto care professional inspect the condenser to determine whether it can be cleaned or should be replaced.
Check the Hoses
Inspect hoses and belts for wear and cracks. Also, turn your car on with the air conditioning running and listen for noise around the air conditioning system. Rattling can mean loose mounts or vibrating belts that need to be tightened.
Also keep in mind a dirty cabin air filter can greatly reduce the air blow through your A/C system. It’s a good idea to have your cabin air filter checked and replaced at least once a year.
Sugar Land Auto Air Conditioning Repair
If you’re worried your cooling system or air conditioning might be failing, Colony One Auto Center is ready to help. We offer full diagnostics and repair for both cooling systems and air conditioning. Request a service or a consultation with us, and in the meantime, stay cool!