It’s no secret that winter is hard on a car, especially if you live in a climate that sees snow. Between the potholes and the salt, it’s no wonder that your vehicle is ready for a little TLC come springtime.
Every vehicle is different and will have different needs based on its age, mileage, if it’s parked in a garage versus uncovered parking, and the area that you live in. However, below is a universal checklist that everyone should consider no matter what they are driving.
- Start by giving your car a good wash, making sure to focus on the underneath. This will help to get all of the dirt and sand off of your vehicle’s exterior and undercarriage. This is especially important for people who live in snowier climates.
- Spring is a great time to declutter and clean out the inside of your car. You can put away the snow scraper for a few more months and maybe take some of that emergency cold weather gear out too.
- Winter is hard on a car’s battery so make sure to test your car’s battery and replace if necessary.
- Inspect your tire pressure and tread. You might consider realigning and/or rotating your tires as well.
- Your shocks and struts take a beating from all of winter’s potholes. Make sure that you have them checked (and replaced if necessary) to avoid worst damage to your vehicle.
- Exhaust leaks are a bad sign. Make sure you are testing your exhaust system and contacting a mechanic right away with any issues.
- Spring brings with it rain and storms. Make sure you have a good set of wiper blades on your car and plenty of wiper fluid.
- Help yourself and your car out and replace the cabin filter if you haven’t already done so. As a bonus, this will help to combat those spring allergies.
- Your lights and mirrors might have some lingering dust and winter debris on them. Examine mirrors and lights by looking closely for any cloudiness or visual obstructions. If necessary, clean both thoroughly and replace your car’s bulbs.
- Seasonal shifts are a good time to check in on your vehicle’s fluid levels (oil, transmission, coolant, and brake fluid). Look for any corrosion and make sure that all fluid levels meet the minimum limits.
- It’s likely that it has been a while since you last used your air conditioner. It’s a good idea to test it now so that you know it will be working when you really need it in a few months.
- Look for any paint chips/damages that might have been hiding under the winter grime. See that these are fixed before they become any worst.
Additionally, make sure that you are aware of any upcoming renewal dates. These can include but aren’t limited to your insurance policy renewal, license registration, and oil changes.
While running diagnostics on your vehicle regularly can add up, we cannot stress the importance enough. However the routine maintenance listed above will help prevent an even more pricey repair in the future.