Driving in Extreme Heat? A Madras Ford Dealer Offers Some Vital Tips

Summer is around the corner and with it comes the extreme heat. Yet the summer heat often comes with damaging effects on your car, especially if you don’t take the necessary precautions. You may even end up taking your vehicle to the closest Madras Ford dealer for repairs.

How can you prevent the heat from bringing your car to a screeching halt?

Check your batteries

Many drivers worry about how the winter cold can zap their batteries. In reality, they should be just as worried about the summer heat. The extreme temperatures of summer can cause the battery fluid to evaporate faster, which in turn can corrode the battery terminals and clamps. To avoid this, clean any corrosive buildup from the terminal and make sure the clamps are fastened tightly. Is your battery nearing the three-year mark? Have it inspected as it may need immediate replacement.

Top up on coolant

Coolants are to your engine what a glass of water might be to a thirsty person. So, always make sure there’s enough coolant in your engine when driving in the summer. Check your owner’s manual carefully, however, as different Ford vehicles have different recommended water-to-coolant ratios. Take a look at how often the coolant should be changed as well; it’s typically between 24,000 to 100,000 miles, though it varies depending on the model (or even year) of your car.

Properly inflate your tires

Did you know that underinflated tires are more sensitive to heat and more prone to blowouts? It’s always a good idea to check your tires before driving, but be extra vigilant when you know it’ll be a hot day ahead. Not sure what the right tire pressure is? While tire manufacturers have their own pressure recommendations, you should follow what’s in your car manual instead. Note, however, that sometimes a car will require different tire pressures for the front and rear tires.

Inspect the belts and hoses

Your vehicle’s belts and hoses are critical pieces that keep your car cool, but extreme heat can cause them to wear out faster. Should they crack, blister, or snap, it won’t be long until your radiator overheats and your vehicle stalls on the highway. If you’re handy under the hood, you can inspect your belts and hoses for damage. Otherwise, have them professionally checked. Replace worn out parts as soon as possible to avoid any mishaps along the road.

Have a roadside emergency kit

You never know when a breakdown might happen, but you can lessen your headaches if you have an emergency kit ready. You should always have a spare tire in the trunk, but make sure to check its pressure from time to time. Other essentials include road flares, jumper cables, water for your engine, a flashlight with extra batteries, and a bottle of coolant. Your kit should also have the number of your dealer, mechanic, or car insurer so you can call for roadside assistance ASAP.

Indeed, driving in the heat of summer offers its own set of challenges, but you can prevent it with proper maintenance. Drive safe, everyone!

Want more helpful vehicle tips? Visit TS&S Ford, a family-owned Ford dealer in Madras, OR.

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