Tune-ups tend to be a summer tradition in Maryland. Any change in the seasons, however, is a good prompt to think about what your vehicle may need in the coming months. No one wants to be stuck with an unexpected breakdown. Here are some ways you can give your vehicle a small tune-up at home.
The first thing to do is inspect your battery. The combination of warmer weather and longer driving that happens during the summer puts a greater strain on the battery. Clean up your terminals to ensure a good connection is happening. A little baking soda (1 tablespoon), mixed with a little hot water (1 cup), and an old toothbrush, can make a world of difference.
Then think about ways to reduce the interior temperature of your vehicle. This will reduce the stress which heat and sunlight puts on your upholstery and dashboard. Something as simple as a sunshade placed in your windshield during the summer months can cool the interior dramatically.
Give your fluid levels a good check too. Give your coolant levels a priority to keep the engine from overheating. Add more coolant at the proper ratio if levels are low. Let your vehicle cool before opening the coolant tank lid.
For those who need a more advanced tune-up because of the age of their vehicle, there are several areas you’ll want to check on your vehicle.
Check your hoses and belts for wear and tear issues or damage.
Replace your filters, including your fuel, air, and cabin air filters.
Review the health of your ignition components and consider replacing your spark plugs, wires, and coils.
If you have the knowledge to replace these items on your own, then invest a weekend and make it happen. Putting off a tune-up only reduces your vehicle’s performance and efficiency, both of which can cost you more money in both the short and long term.
In closing, bring your vehicle in for the service it requires. A small investment into an automotive tune-up can help to keep everything humming along for a long time to come.