Driving In Extreme Heat
Summer is a great time to get outside and enjoy all the activities that nice weather allows us to do. Whether it be a trip to the beach, a quick weekend get-away or a night out at your favorite team’s home game, our summer excursions usually involve a car to get us there. The summer season can bring intense, extreme temps and just as we humans can be affected by excessive heat, so can our cars. The last thing you want to have happen is to be stranded by the side of the road on a hot summer day because the heat has gotten the best of your vehicle.
Here are some important tips for successfully driving in extreme heat.
Check The Cooling System
Many people don’t realize that automobile engines generate a tremendous amount of heat while running, especially at high speeds. The car’s radiator and coolant are vitally important to ensure that the motor stays at a normal operating temperature. Before the intense heat arrives this summer, be sure to check your car’s coolant (antifreeze) in the radiator and fill it as needed. A note of caution! Never open the cap of a hot radiator, as the pressure inside could cause coolant to suddenly erupt. Be sure that your car is cool before checking the coolant.
Without a strong battery, you won’t be going anywhere this summer. Both extreme cold and heat have a tendency to reveal a car battery’s real starting capability. Before the super hot days of summer arrive, have a mechanic test the battery to see if it is functioning as it should. In addition, check its terminals to make sure there is no corrosive build up on the posts and that the cable clamps are nice and tight. Doing all of this will really help your car stay dependable all summer long.
Other Important Fluids
In addition to antifreeze (coolant), your car relies on a variety of other fluids and lubricants to operate properly. The below should also be checked on a regular basis.
• Motor Oil
Most cars require 5 quarts of oil for normal operation, but just to be safe, check your owner’s manual to confirm what your automobile requires. In addition, cars today utilize different weights of oil. Your manual will also be able to tell you what kind of oil to use.
• Transmission Fluid
Some cars today do not have a dipstick to check the transmission fluid. If your car has one, you can determine the fluid level in the same way that you check the motor oil. Should your car be without a fluid dipstick, contact your mechanic or dealer to find out how you can confirm that the transmission fluid is good to go.
• Got A/C?
There is no worse feeling than getting in your car on a hot summer’s day to discover that the air conditioning is broken. There are a variety of reasons why your A/C can fail, including a leak in the system or an insufficient amount of Freon in the system. If you find that your air conditioning has gone on the fritz, take the car to a trustworthy repair center who can diagnose the issue.
Where The Rubber Meets The Road – Tires
Even the newest car will let you down without good tires. It is important to always be sure that your tires have the proper air pressure, especially in extreme heat. Driving a car with under inflated tires can result in extra heat building up and cause a blowout. Mix this scenario with intensely hot weather and you have a potentially dangerous situation on your hands. Lastly, make sure your spare tire is road worthy and is also properly inflated.
Breakdowns – Hope For The Best, Plan For The Worst
It’s unfortunate, but even with the most careful maintenance, some cars will still break down. Be prepared for such an event by carrying the following supplies in your trunk.
• Motor Oil
• Jumper Cables
• Non Perishable Food
• Road Flares
• First Aid Kit
• Basic Tool Kit
The summer season is an exciting time to plan adventures with family and friends. When it gets super hot, be sure your car is ready to handle it. Being prepared will pay off big time with many miles of trouble free, tune blasting driving this season!
PS – Don’t forget the windshield washer fluid!
Get in Contact With Us… Its Easy
For more information of how you can stay safe when driving in extreme heat. Visit Insure on the Spot today for more information. Looking for Auto Insurance or SR22 Insurance in Chicago? Look no further for comprehensive coverage!