As the temperatures warm up, you may have noticed a few signs that spring is making its return. All that snow is melting, the trees (if you look closely) have a few buds, and quite frankly, Minnesotans are getting outside and doing things. While there’s a lot to look forward to in Spring, there are a few things we may overlook. If you’re like the average American family, the warmer temperatures include busier schedules with spring sports, family bike rides, and planning for summer. Before you check off your spring-time to-do list for good, there’s one more thing we recommend making time for…a spring vehicle maintenance check.
Winter can be harsh not only on the roads and our outdoor activities, but also on your car. If you feel like getting a spring maintenance check is just one more thing to add to your busy schedule, then keep reading for our top 3 benefits for why it’s worth the effort.
1. A more enjoyable ride
From potholes to salt on the roads, your car may need some TLC after a long winter. One of the first signs your vehicle needs a tune up is a rougher ride. Whether it’s tires that are damaged, alignment that needs to be checked or suspension systems that have seen better days, a spring maintenance check will help. Some common maintenance checks your car needs right now:
- Tire rotation and balance
- Tire and rim inspection for dents and other damage
- Alignment especially is your car pulls to the left or to the right
- Inspection of your struts and shocks
If you need any of these adjusted, you may have already noticed a rougher ride, pulling to one side when you drive, shaking at high speeds, or even nose diving when you come to a stop. Taking the time to check these each year will help you extend the life of your tires and rims while enjoying a smoother, safer ride.
2. A safer ride
Everyone wants their car to be safe for driving all year long. When you neglect regular maintenance checks with your mechanic, you put your car and your family at risk while on the road. Taking the time to get a spring maintenance check can keep you safe and alert you to potential problems in the future. Your next tuneup should include these safety checks:
- Cabin Air filter replacement. If your car is a 2000 or newer vehicle, there’s a good chance you have a cabin air filter. The cabin air filter’s job is to keep allergens and pollutants out of your car cabin so you are breathing fresh air – no matter how long your commute is. It’s a good idea to get this checked and replaced each spring.
- Lights: Spring is a good time to check headlights, taillights, and turn signals to ensure they all survived the winter. Have your mechanic check to make sure they have not yellowed or hazed over which can be a nighttime visibility hazard, and replace any burnt out bulbs
- Windshield wipers: After a long winter, new wipers are a must to keep your windshield clear as those spring rains arrive.
3. Peace of mind
The last thing you want in any season is a breakdown on the side of the road. From torn belts to a flat tire, getting stuck and waiting for that tow truck can be a drag. When you schedule a springtime maintenance check, you get peace of mind knowing that everything’s been inspected, and is in great shape for the spring and summer months of driving. So, what else should you ask your mechanic to inspect?
- Belts and Hoses: Our bitterly cold temperatures can wreak havoc on your belts and hoses. Having them inspected for wear, cracks, and tears can help prevent broken belts and breakdowns on your way to that great outdoor activity.
- Fluid levels: One last thing before your mechanic closes the hood and hands back the keys…check your fluid levels. You’ll want to make sure your fluids are filled to the proper level including coolant, transmission, power steering, brake, and in some cases, hydraulic fluids. Knowing these are filled correctly can extend the life of your car as you get out there and enjoy the warmer weather.
Getting your vehicle scheduled for a spring maintenance check can save you time, money, and a headache down the road. If you’re ready to get your spring tune up scheduled, we’re ready to help get you back on the road with the peace of mind you deserve.