Fall Auto Maintenance - It's Time
November 16th, 2015
The leaves are falling, the days are getting shorter and winter is going to be here before you know it. Considering what winters in Boise, ID can be like, it’s important to schedule auto repair and maintenance to make sure your vehice's ready for the cold weather and wintry conditions to come! Here’s a brief checklist of things to be aware of before the snow flies:
- · Oil change: Cold temperatures mean that your oil thickens up and becomes more viscous, impeding its ability to circulate on cold startups. A fresh oil change helps reduce wear and makes it easier for oil to get to the upper end of the engine at startup. NOTE: synthetic motor oils retain their flow properties better at all temperature ranges, as compared to conventional oil.
- · Hoses and Belts: Cold weather tends to make belts and hoses more brittle. The serpentine belt drives many of your car’s accessories, including the water pump; if it snaps, you’ll be stranded!
- · Battery: Cold weather is especially hard on batteries. Subfreezing temperatures actually slow down the chemical reaction between lead and acid, the process that stores and delivers current to your electrical system. Have your battery checked and make sure that the connections are clean, tight and free of corrosion buildup.
- · Wipers: Even the best windshield wipers are only good for about a year, as UV rays, the elements and normal wear take their toll. If your wipers are starting to crack or shed chunks or strips of rubber, replace them for good visibility.
- · Lights: Being able to be seen is just important as visibility. Make sure all your lights are in good working order, and consider removing oxidation from headlight lenses if they’re dulled and yellowed.
- · Tires: Be sure to check your tires’ tread depth and inflation levels before winter, and bear in mind that they actually lose pressure as the temperatures drop. If you plan on being out on the roads a lot, you might consider a set of winter tires (just remember to go back to all-season tires once temperatures get above 45 degrees).
- · Cooling: Your car’s coolant is essential to heading off freezeups and to ensure that the heater and defroster work properly. Consider having a coolant flush and pressure check performed, to wash contaminants out of the system and make sure that coolant flows freely through the engine and heater core.
- · Exhaust: Exhaust leaks can be dangerous and need to be addressed right away. A thorough inspection of the exhaust system, including the mufflers, connectors, hangers, pipes and catalytic converter, are a good idea before winter.
At Miracle Tire and Total Car Care in Boise, ID, we know that some people enjoy winter, while other people hate it. Love it or hate it, you can’t do much about it except get ready for it. We want to make sure you and your car come through winter with as little trouble as possible – give us a call and make an appointment so we can help you even the odds in your favor.