How Summer Heat Affects Your Vehicle
We believe that safety is the most important feature of a car and the #1 safety feature is having good working brakes.
How Summer Heat Affects Your Vehicle
As the warmer weather is upon us in San Diego, temperatures generally tend to climb. Since most people keep their cars parked outside on the street or in garages, also subject to climate conditions, heat will inevitably take its toll. Keeping in mind the parts of your vehicle most susceptible to hot weather and having it checked out by an auto repair expert can help save you money and prevent excessive wear and tear this summer. Call Advantec Auto Repair for a vehicle inspection to keep your car engine tuned up.
During the summer, having your tire pressure checked every time you visit the gas station is a good idea. In addition, it is worth purchasing a tire pressure gauge to monitor or take it to the local auto repair shop in San Diego. It is good to check your pressure because tires expand when exposed to heat, and during the hotter months, the asphalt you drive on absorbs that heat. Therefore, tire pressure is affected by temperature. Ensure you’re keeping your pressure equal to the number inside your door jamb, which most vehicle manufacturers include. Otherwise, you’ll be putting excessive wear on them and must replace them sooner. Tire blowouts can be dangerous and costly.
Heat also tends to have a degrading effect on rubber. Tires are made from synthetic and natural rubber compounds full of oils that keep them flexible. Over time, heat and friction with the road can dry the oils out and cause the rubber to become brittle. So, if your tires are old, it’s a good idea to call our Advantec Auto Repair team for a tire replacement and new tire installation them before a hot-weather season. Schedule regular tire rotations to reduce wear and tire on your tires and extend the lifespan of your tires.
Hot weather can shorten your battery’s life significantly because it accelerates corrosion. Have our Advantec Auto Repair mechanic clean the corrosive buildup around your battery’s terminals and tighten up your clamps to ensure the connection is solid. Additionally, higher temperatures in Mission Valley and throughout San Diego can affect your vehicle’s electrical system, causing your battery fluid to evaporate faster. Suppose your battery is old, or you don’t know how old it is. In that case, getting a car battery replacement will ultimately be less expensive than having a dead battery serviced after a breakdown.
The strain on a vehicle’s battery increases during summer due to the increased load from the fans and air conditioning system. In addition, they often struggle to produce power in the heat, so it’s a good idea to have jumper cables on hand, especially if you’re taking a more extended trip.
Oil & Fluids
Monitoring your car’s fluids is always important but especially crucial during the summer. In the same way that people should stay extra hydrated in the heat, cars do too! Coolant is vital. Low levels of coolant can kill your engine. As you keep yourself cool in the summer, you need to keep your engine cool for it to be able to function at its best. Your motor is working extra hard in the summer. It’s the cooling system’s job to protect the engine from overheating. Engine coolant becomes depleted over time, and its protective additives deplete. You should flush the system, and coolant should be replaced periodically by our Advantec Auto Repair team in Mission Valley, especially during the hotter months.
Make sure the coolant is filled to proper levels between flushes by monitoring the overflow reservoir. Top off the reservoir with a 50/50 mix of water and the coolant type recommended by the manufacturer if necessary. Worn hoses or damaged radiators can allow coolant to leak and your engine’s temperature to rise. Make sure to have the following additional fluids checked regularly by our auto repair specialist:
- Motor oil
- Transmission fluid
- Brake fluid
- Power-steering fluid
- Windshield wiper fluid
Since natural evaporation of these fluids is common when it’s hot, you can park in a cool, shady spot to help prevent it.
Vehicles tend to operate better when cold air is present because cold air has a high density, which allows the car to take in more oxygen and maintain horsepower at a higher level. Unfortunately, most people use the air conditioner in their car every day during the summer, which can take a toll on its performance since it uses power from the engine to keep the cabin cool. Replacing your cabin air filter is an excellent way to keep your airflow clean and clear. If you’ve noticed the air quality isn’t as good as it could be, having a mechanic take a look can quickly fix the problem.
Belts & Hoses
You’ll want to consult with our Advantec Auto Repair technician in San Diego regarding the health of your car belts and hoses. These crucial pieces must be in good shape to maintain a safe, healthy, functioning car. A broken or leaking belt or hose can lead to loss of steering control, an overheated radiator, or engine failure that can result in a breakdown. Research has shown that nearly 20% of vehicles on the road have worn belts that need replacing, and almost 15% have a hose that needs updating. If your car has over 85,000 miles, the probability of belt wear is even higher. Intense heat can cause cracking and blistering in belts and hoses.
During the summer, have an our Advantec Auto Repair expert check for the following:
- Cracking and wear in all belts
- Belt tensioner functionality
- Idler pulley functionality
- Soft spots in hoses where reinforcement may be breaking down