How to Get your Car Ready for Spring
With the impending arrival of spring, car owners are taking the necessary steps to get their vehicles ready for the warmer weather. There are a few simple things you can do before spring actually arrives to ensure your car is going to look great and function flawlessly for the next several months.
Addressing The Winter Damage
Obviously, the first thing you’re going to want to do is address the damage that was caused by the winter weather. This is going to involve checking the overall condition of the vehicle, and then making decisions about what to do in the way of repairs once you’ve come away with a clear idea of everything that needs to be done.
Keep in mind the recommended service schedule for your vehicle. Beyond that, there are several things you can do in terms of properly caring for your car in the period between the worst of winter and the onset of spring.
Washing, Detailing and Interior Care
Keeping your vehicle clean during the winter months can be challenging. Ice naturally causes a lot of problems and you also have to consider the sand and salt that are placed on the roads before or after snowstorms. While the temptation is to just give up and wait for the weather to warm up, washing your car during winter can actually prove to be extremely beneficial. While you can deal with these things on your own, it might be a better idea to visit a car wash and pay for the most comprehensive package.
Once you’ve taken care of the exterior of your car, the next thing you’re going to want to do is move on to the interior. Put your winter toolkit away, make sure you have your essentials (towing cables, jumper cables, flashlights, a small set of tools), and consider cleaning the upholstery. You will definitely want to clean the floor mats. You may even want to consider replacing them entirely. Your passenger compartment air filter made need a replacement and you should also think about having the climate unit serviced.
Checking Fluids And Filters
Check your fluid levels. You should also make it a point to perform a visual inspection of your air filter. If the filter is dirty, have it replaced immediately. You should also check the oil levels, while making sure your coolant levels are where they need to be. If you have an automatic, then make sure to check your automatic transmission fluid levels as well. Your brake fluid and power steering fluid will also need to be inspected.
If you can’t remember the last time you had these replaced, schedule a liquid change appointment for your vehicle. Smartphone apps can actually be used to help you keep track of your mileage.
However, if you do remember the last time you had your liquids changed, you don’t have to worry about this unless you deal with extreme weather on a regular basis.
Your Tires and a Full Inspection
In the event that you’ve had your winter tires on and you haven’t had to deal with any snow for a while and it looks like spring isn’t going anywhere, have a tire changed scheduled for your car. Check the winter tires for damage or similar problems before you put them away until next winter.
Have your spring/summer tires fitted, and then make sure everything is ready to go. You want the lug bolts to be properly fastened and you want to make sure each tire has the appropriate amount of pressure. Remember that even if you have all-season tires, you’re still going to want to check them for pressure, potential damage, and anything else that might get in the way of their functionality.
A full inspection is going to be the final step, in terms of getting your car ready for the spring season and beyond. You’re going to want to turn to your mechanic for a full inspection of your vehicle, which will include checking your battery, your ignition, your cooling system, your steering system, your suspension, and everything else that defines an efficient, safe car. You should also ask your mechanic to scan your car with an ODB II tool for any potential problems.
Last but not least, you want to make sure your insurance is taken care of as well. This should be in addition to any other costs or taxes associated with the safe, legal use of your car. In the end, it’s a good idea to have your car inspected every year.