Top tips for looking after your car in summer

Man checking underneath the bonnet

Proper maintenance of your car is essential all year round, and people will often talk about the importance of looking after your car during winter. Sometimes people tend to forget however, that the summer months can put just as much, if not more of a strain on your car than the rest of the year.

As children and students break up for their summer holidays and adults get some much needed time off work, the roads and motorways suddenly become full of cars. Whether you’re simply taking a daytrip, or driving across the country for a much needed holiday, cars tend to see a lot more usage over these months, with the number of long journeys dramatically increasing.

Nobody wants to have a holiday ruined by a breakdown – you’ve spent months preparing and looking forward for your break, only to have your journey cut short. Don’t worry though, by focussing on a few key areas and following these tips, you can make sure your car is in tip top condition this summer, meaning you can relax and enjoy your holidays without having to worry about if your car will make it back home again!

Tyres

The rising temperatures over summer can cause tyre pressures to change. Under or over-inflated tyres can put you at higher risk of punctures, while also reducing the fuel efficiency of your vehicle. Check your car manufacturer’s guidelines to find out what the optimal tyre pressure for your car is and ensure that your tyres are properly inflated before any long journeys. It is also important to check that the tread of your tyres is in good condition.

Air Conditioning

One thing that is difficult to avoid over the summer is traffic jams. With everyone wanting to travel somewhere, the roads tend to be busier than usual. And the only thing that makes a traffic jam worse is being stuck in a boiling hot car! You should be looking to get your air conditioning serviced every couple of years, but don’t leave this until it’s too late!

Air Filter

Your air filter is there to stop dirt, dust and debris from entering your car, and will become clogged over time, especially during summer. Changing your air filter is incredibly quick and easy to do, and should be done once a year at least.

Oil

During the summer when you are doing much more long distance driving, your car is at a higher risk of overheating. Oil is essential to keeping your engine running smoothly, so it is vital that this is checked on a regular basis, especially before any long journeys. As well as checking that your oil levels are correct, you should also be checking the colour of the oil. It should be coming out brownish yellow and clean on your dip stick – if it looks a darker colour or contains dirt and grime, you should take your car in to get a complete oil change.

Windscreen Wipers

As much as we all hope for a warm, sunny summer, it is not uncommon for us to be hit with sudden, surprise thunderstorms. To keep your visibility at a safe level, it is vital that you replace your windscreen wipers at the first sign of damage or deterioration.

Battery

Through the winter months your battery will be under added pressure, and the potential damage caused by this could still be lingering when summer arrives. Make sure you perform a battery check on your vehicle before you leave on any long summer journeys to reduce the risk of your battery dying mid-trip.

If you’re planning a summer trip and are worried about your car, fear not! Mr Clutch have branches all over the country, so visit our Branch Locator page to find the closest to you!