October is Fall Car Care Month
October is Fall Car Care Month and now is the perfect time to make sure your vehicle is ready for those colder winter weather conditions that lie ahead. Whether you have Fifth Gear Automotive and our Certified Technicians do the dirty work, or you do it yourself, here are a few items to check out to possibly eliminate problems and/or even breakdowns later.
Battery Fall is the perfect time to inspect your battery. Check to make sure the battery connections clean, tight and free of corrosion. Switches in temperature whether from cold to hot, or hot to cold is the hardest time on batteries. That is why a Fall check of the battery and charging system at this time can avoid that early morning no-start surprise. Also, check the age of your battery, because they don’t always give warning signs before they fail, it is advisable to replace batteries that are more than three years old.
Tires Check your tires, including the tire pressure and tread depth. Uneven wear indicates a need for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots. Most tire shops will inspect your tires for no charge and advise of any potential problems. During winter, tire pressure should be checked weekly as tires lose pressure when temperatures drop.
Brakes Have the brake system checked. This is really should be an every season suggestion, but making sure your pads, rotors and other brake components are performing well is important. Brakes are critical to vehicle safety and particularly important when driving on conditions that can occur during the upcoming winter season.
Replace wiper blades Check your wiper blade’s rubber to ensure it is flexible and operate the wipers to see that the blades clear the windshield, and don’t forget that rear window wiper if you have one. Wiper blades normally last about 6-12 months, so replace them if they are worn or old, you’ll be glad you did when you need them.
Check the lights Take a stroll around your vehicle and check the operation of all lights: headlights, taillights, parking lights, brake lights, and emergency flashers. Replace all broken bulbs and those that have stopped working. Make sure all lights are clean. If you own an older vehicle with sealed-beam headlamps, you might want to consider upgrading to halogen lamps for improved visibility and safer driving. Also, as cars age, the headlights can become cloudy or hazy, especially on cars that are routinely parked outside. More than a cosmetic problem, clouded lenses can pose a serious threat to safety, compromising night vision and reducing the effectiveness of your headlights. Consider having a headlight restoration done or replacing the lenses.
Make sure heater/defroster work Unless you enjoy dog-sledding, driving without a properly working heater is not only uncomfortable but unsafe. Check your front and rear window defrosters to ensure proper working condition. If necessary, have heater and defroster systems inspected and/or repaired by a Certified Mechanic.
Check the cooling system Check your coolant level and antifreeze capabilities. Have a Certified Mechanic ensure sure your vehicle has the correct solution of water and coolant to handle the temperatures you will be experiencing. And know that while they are inspecting the coolant they will be inspecting your hoses, radiator, and belts which can all be affected by the colder weather.
Check all fluid levels and filters If it is liquid, check it out—brake and power steering fluids, transmission fluid and washer fluid. This is also a good time to have your oil changed and your air and cabin filters inspected for optimal performance. Make sure they are all at or above minimum safe levels and refill as necessary.
Steering and Suspension Inspection Have a Certified Mechanic inspect your steering system, suspension, and front-end alignment. We recommend getting this done at least once a year, and before it turns cold is a perfect time.
Get a good car wash/detail. This is personal, but getting your vehicle cleaned up before the winter sets in can have its benefits. It can be easier to spot potential problems, it can eliminate summer remnants of bugs, tree sap, etc. and finally it makes you and your car feel better when you pull up next to someone at a red light.
Having your vehicle ready for Fall can help ensure reliability and safety and fewer bigger problems later when the colder weather settles in.
Fifth Gear Can Help
Fifth Gear Automotive in Lewisville, TX can help with your Fall car care. Whether it is part of our thorough courtesy inspection that we perform with each visit, or if you have questions about any of the items above related to the performance of your vehicle. Call to schedule service or click on the link below to set up a reservation with Fifth Gear Automotive for a comprehensive inspection by one of our ASE certified mechanics.
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Fifth Gear Automotive
Fifth Gear Automotive is a family owned independent automotive repair shop with over 100 years of experience with all domestic and import makes and models, specializing in European auto repair and over 13 years serving Lewisville, Highland Village, Flower Mound, Lantana, Double Oak, and the surrounding communities. We have one goal; Complete Customer Satisfaction on all your auto repairs.