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  • An Easy Driveway Vehicle Check During National Car Care Month

    An Easy Driveway Vehicle Check During National Car Care Month

    April is National Car Care Month.  A great reminder to get your car ready for the hot summer months ahead.  This year,  most automotive service departments are open to conduct repairs, recalls and fulfill other service needs. But you can also maintain your vehicle from home with a driveway vehicle check. 

    “A driveway vehicle check only takes about 10 minutes. These simple steps will help keep you on the road so you can run important errands and arrive safely to your destinations,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council.  

    The Car Care Council provides these tips:

    • Check all fluids, including engine oil, power steering and brake and transmission, as well as windshield washer solvent and antifreeze/coolant.
    • Check the hoses and belts that can become cracked, brittle, frayed, loose or show signs of excessive wear. These are critical to the proper functioning of the electrical system, air conditioning, power steering and the cooling system.
    • Check the tires, including tire pressure and tread. Uneven wear indicates a need for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots. Check the air in your spare tire as well!  It’s a bad surprise when you need a spare to find out it has no air.  One last thing-if your wheels have wheel locks, be sure you know where the key is.
    • Check the wipers and lighting so that you can see and be seen. Check that all interior and exterior lighting is working properly and inspect and replace worn wiper blades so you can see clearly when driving during precipitation. Keep the reservoir filled with solvent.

    If at any point in this process you find your vehicle is in need of a repair or a new part, then I suggest taking it to your dealer or a reputable repair shop. You'll find my tips on how to find a good repair shop here.

    Also, remember that even during times when you aren't driving as much, it's still important to maintain your vehicle.

    “If your vehicle sits idle for too long, the battery could die, the tires can develop flat spots and the engine oil may start to deteriorate, " said White. "Just a short solo drive once a week and a little car care will keep your car running efficiently and safely.”

    We’ve also provided some tips on how to take care of your vehicle when it’s idle, and parked short-term, here.

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    Photo Credit: Rob Marmion/Shutterstock.com.
    This article was updated on April 21, 2022.