Keep Your Car Running Cool this Summer

Summer is around the corner. Omaha gets hot and humid, and has plenty of days where you want to have a cool running car for comfort and safety. A car that can’t keep itself cool will not stay on the road long. The good news is there are some very affordable ways to make sure your vehicle stays cool this Summer.  After Fifty plus years of car repair in Omaha, we’ve seen how regular maintenance can save people a lot of money and stress.

Radiator

Your radiator’s job is to keep your engine running cool. Make sure to check the coolant level every oil change. It’s also wise to get the system flushed every 50,000 miles or five years. Your radiator fluid should look orange or green; it should not look milky or rusty. Never remove your radiator cap when the engine is hot, the coolant could be boiling under pressure.

Hoses

Extreme heat can damage a worn hose. Hoses usually last for at least five years, but not always. Visually check them for leaks, cracks, and peeling. While your engine is still warm, squeeze along the hose – it should feel firm, but not hard. If the hose is spongy or soft, even in one section, you need to replace it before it fails and causes more damage.

Oil

If you’re low on oil, or you’re running old oil, you’re putting stress on your engine. Oil lubricates a lot of moving parts and helps prevent overheating. Oil is easy to check and keep track of. As long as your car’s oil is a yellow-brown that’s a good sign. Dark oil needs a change, and milky oil needs a mechanic. Change your oil every 3,000-4,000 miles, depending on your driving and type of vehicle.

Battery

Battery problems usually occur in the Winter, but heat can also stress your battery. With your engine turned off, check for frayed wires and corrosion (a powdery buildup) around the terminals – where the cables are clamped to the battery posts. If you find corrosion, you can scrub it off with a disposable toothbrush and a mixture of baking soda and water.

Air Conditioning

If you’re not getting cool air, your car is not going to be comfortable. An easy way to check is to stick a thermometer through the AC vent. If the temp is not as cold as you’d like, start with replacing your car’s cabin air filter. This should be done every 20,000 miles.

Temperature Gauge

Keep an eye on your temperature gauge. High speeds, idling traffic, running the AC, or pulling heavy loads cause your vehicle to heat up faster. If your car looks like it’s about to overheat turn the air conditioning completely off and turn the heater to high. This will vent some of the engine heat. Don’t keep driving if your temp gauge is in the red zone. Let your car cool down and get it into an auto repair shop ASAP.

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