Is Your Vehicle Ready for the Summer?

The heat of Summer along with the dust and stop-and-go-traffic will take their toll on your vehicle, so you need to make sure your vehicle is well looked after or else face a possible breakdown. Many drivers do not have the experience or physical prowess to deal with breakdowns. This article is aimed to educate inexperienced drivers and for us at Barry’s Auto Body to offer professional assistance where you need it. Some of the following tips below are easy to do, while others will require a skilled technician (and that’s where we come in).

Cooling System: Overheating is the greatest cause of vehicle breakdowns and the most common reason for a vehicle overheating is a stuck thermostat. The easiest way to check if your thermostat is not open is to feel the upper radiator hose. Once the engine warms up, the hose should be warm as well. If not, then the thermostat is not opening. We advise you bring your vehicle to an auto repair shop and have a technician resolve the issue. Do not under any circumstance, remove the radiator cap while the engine is warm because you can severely burn yourself. Another common reason is a leak in your vehicle’s cooling system. You can easily identify a leak if the radiator is low on fluid and there is a pool of coolant on the floor underneath your vehicle. You can also check the hoses and the welds of your radiator for the source of the leak. We recommend replacing the part, which you can do by yourself or contact us to make the repair. As a reminder, the cooling system should be flushed and refilled every two years. Periodically, you should check the level, condition and concentration of the coolant. We recommend a 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and water. For more details on cooling system repairs: Barry’s Cooling System Repair

Air Conditioning: You know your vehicle’s air conditioning system will be worked to the bone during the summer. But a breakdown in the AC system is more likely to occur in older vehicle than in new ones. In the event of an AC breakdown, you will have to take your vehicle to an auto repair shop and the technician will identify the problem, which is most likely replacing a malfunctioning part. Please refer to your owner’s manual for more information on what part to get.

Oil: Every 3,000 miles you should change your oil and oil filter as specified by your owner’s manual. Since it is the summer where you may make extended trips with heavy cargo such as a trailer, it is imperative that you check the oil pressure and oil level periodically. Low oil pressure is often a contributing factor to engine failures as low oil level is may cause engine parts to run hot, gall and seize. Many auto repair shops offer a free car wash or some additional perk when you get an oil change.

Engine Performance: The engine is a complex machine, so there is no simply way to identify and resolve issues. We highly advise that if there is something wrong with your car, do not put it off. Contact a certified technician and have him/her perform repairs. And since the summer is more often in dusty conditions, you should replace the filters. For more information on engine performance repairs: Barry’s Engine Diagnostics and Performance

Tires: Planning to road trips for the summer? Make sure you check your tires periodically for uneven wearing, cupping and irregularities. Are your tire pressures in good measure? A tire that is under inflated will put extra strain on the tire wall which can lead to failure. Having a tire gauge will be invaluable to you and is inexpensive to purchase one. In addition, we at Barry’s Auto Body can check the tire pressure for you at no cost. In the event of a flat tire, make sure you have a spare tire and a jack. You should make sure that your spare and jack are in good condition before heading out on long drives. You never know what may happen, so be prepared.

Battery: Batteries can fail any time of the year, so it’s important to have a set of jump leads or a car battery recharger at hand. If not, you’ll have to look for a willing “donor” car or call for breakdown assistance. The only accurate way to check if a battery needs replacing is with professional equipment. As a routine care, scrape away corrosion from posts and cable connections and clean all surfaces. If the battery caps are removable, check the fluid levels monthly. We highly recommend that you wear eye protection and rubber gloves and avoid contact with corrosive deposits and battery acids. We have a YouTube video on “How to Clean Your Car Battery Terminals.”

We hope you found this article helpful in prepping your vehicle for the summer and for keep your vehicle in good health for the long-term. If you require professional help with your vehicle, look no further. Barry’s Auto Body offers the best auto repair services in Staten Island. We’re here to help you every step of the way, from simple tune ups to body makeovers from auto accidents. Contact us today at 718-948-8585 or browse our service catalog for further information on what we can do your vehicle! To view our service catalog: Barry’s Service Catalog

Disclaimer: The article above are provided for general information purposes only. Your use of any of information within this article is at your own risk, and you are advised to consult with a professional technician before trying to resolve vehicle issues on your own. The provision of this article do not constitute legal advice or opinions of any kind, or any advertising or solicitation.