Don’t let your car fall victim to seasonal deterioration – Give it some early autumn DIY maintenance
With the evenings becoming depressingly darker, a more moist feeling gathering in the air and the leaves starting to curl at the edges, it is safe to say that summer is quickly giving way to autumn. Asides getting the kids’ school uniform and books ready for the new academic year, now is a good time to start preparing our vehicles for the fresh demands the cooler season can put on our cars.
While certain car maintenance jobs will need to be carried out by a qualified mechanic, other projects can be tackled by many a non-mechanical car owner. In order to fully prepare your car for the seasonal change, take a look at the following DIY car maintenance projects your vehicle will thank you for as the cooler climate closes in.
Change the wiper blades
Generally speaking, it rains more in the autumn and winter than in the summer and as a consequence, windscreen wipers are used more frequently. It is advised that we should change our windscreen wipers annually. It therefore makes sense that this essential car part is replaced at the beginning of the autumn, before the heavier rainfall sets in.
Changing a vehicle’s wipers requires little mechanical-expertise or knowledge and is a cost-effective way to keep your car in tip-top condition for the wetter seasons.
Check antifreeze levels
We may not have required the use of antifreeze for some months now but we can rest assure that it won’t be too long before it’s called upon. Ensuring that you have the correct concentration of antifreeze in your car’s engine is crucial to maintaining the health and well-being of your vehicle. With the cold weather beckoning, now is perhaps the best time to check the level of antifreeze in the coolant recovery reservoir.
Check the health of your car’s heater
It might seem like a long time ago since you had your heater on and being surplus to requirement for so long it wouldn’t be too surprising if, come November and the first morning of frost, your heater had all but ceased up. Prevent this irritating scenario from happening by turning your heating on in late summer/early autumn to ensure that it’s still working well. If you find that the heater is not working at its optimum, now’s a good time to get it fixed.
Emergency gear check
OK so it might be a little early to start thinking about de-icer, shovels, gloves, boots and tyre chains but if you’re preparing your car for the cooler weather then why not go for the full caboodle? It won’t do any harm to place such items in your boot, as due to the erratic weather of recent years; you never quite know when extreme climatic conditions will rear their head.
Replace the air filters
It is generally recommended that air filters are changed twice a year. If a summer has been relatively dry, the amount of dust on the road can be higher than during the wetter months. The dry and dusty driving conditions can take its toll on air filters. When an air filter becomes so clogged that it reaches the point where it restricts the airflow, fuel economy, emissions and general performance can be negatively affected. To help ensure that your car performs at its optimum for the forthcoming season, you should make sure that you change your air filter.
Check the lights
With the dark evenings rapidly ascending on the British Isles, we will soon be driving to and home from work in the dark. A car’s lights are naturally required to be on for longer periods during the autumn and winter and it is therefore imperative that they are in good working condition.
Replacement bulbs are relatively inexpensive and can be replaced with minimal mechanical proficiency.