Is your car ready for the road? Checking on it now goes a long way in preventing future trouble. Follow these simple steps to keep your vehicle in top condition.
October is Car Care Month, and AAA is reminding drivers to keep up with proper vehicle maintenance to make sure their car is safe and ready for the road before the winter weather comes.
“Learning how to handle common maintenance issues is beneficial to anyone who gets behind the wheel,” said John Nielsen, managing director of AAA Automotive Engineering and Repair. “Proper maintenance can extend the life of your vehicle and help prevent costly repairs.”
AAA recommends that drivers do these four things to get their car ready for the road:
Check the air and wear of your tires.
The Rubber Manufacturers Association found that 83 percent of Americans do not know how to properly inflate their tires. Tires should be checked monthly —including the spare. Proper pressure levels can be found in the owner’s manual or on a sticker most often located on the driver-side door jamb. Do not use the pressure stamped on the sidewall of the tire.
Don’t know how to repair a flat tire or when to replace it? Watch this video.
Make sure your car battery is properly charged.
Most car batteries last between three and five years, but that can change due to local temperatures and vehicle usage. At every oil change, check the battery cables and ensure they are securely attached to the terminals. Clean the terminals if there are signs of corrosion. Disconnecting the cables to clean the hidden areas where they contact the battery terminals is the best way to remove external corrosion.
For Car Care Month, AAA is offering a free battery testing and 10-point vehicle inspection at select AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities. Find a location near you.
Keep those windshield wipers working.
Inspect your wiper blades every month. Check to see if they are worn, cracked or rigid with age. The life of a rubber insert is typically six months to a year depending on its exposure to the elements.
Also, check the windshield washer fluid reservoir every month. Top it off with a solution formulated to aid in the removal of insects or other debris. In winter, use a solution that will not freeze at low temperatures. Also, test the washer spray nozzles for proper operation and aim before leaving on a trip.
Watch this video to learn more about windshield wipers and washer fluid.
Work with a local repair shop you trust.
Every car requires routine maintenance and repair. The best time to find a mechanic or auto repair shop is before you need one. Find a quality repair shop through AAA’s Approved repair network. Every AAA- facility undergoes a comprehensive investigation and meets stringent quality standards.