Summer is coming and hot and humid conditions are on the horizon. After a long and cold winter, it’s hard to remember just how warm and sunny Michigan can be during the next few months. A few common-sense reminders could help keep you and your family safe on the roads this summer.
- Car interiors get HOT! By now we have all heard heartbreaking examples of unattended children or pets dying from heat injuries while stuck in a hot car. And the weather doesn’t even have to be in the 80s or 90s for tragedy to strike. The interior of a car can reach well over 100 degrees even when the outside temp is in the 60s. Never, ever leave a child alone in a car.
- Check your tires. Tires are the only part of your vehicle that touches the road, and they rarely get the attention they deserve. Michigan’s wild temperature changes can cause tires to break down, even well before they reach their “mileage limit.” Check for tread depth, uneven wear patterns, and cracking on the side walls of your tires. Make sure your tires are inflated to the proper pressure, which can be tricky in the summer because driving even a few blocks to the gas station can increase the pressure to the point it appears safe (but actually isn’t).
- Take care of your engine. High temps and long summer road trips can take a toll on your vehicle’s motor. Oil, coolant, and other fluids should be checked early and often to avoid mechanical breakdowns. And like your tires, rubber hoses and belts are susceptible to cracking or breaking due to major temperature changes.
This list provides just a few basic reminders for summertime car care. Don’t forget to take care of all the other routine maintenance, like checking brakes, replacing windshield wipers, and making sure your lights and turn signals work.