Changan’s Summer Car Care Tips for Cool Heads
Looking forward to your summer road trip on that brand new Changan? Know that it’s built to give you and your family LASTING SAFETY. Still, you need to do your part to make sure that it does! Whether you’re a new car owner or a veteran road warrior, the first rule of thumb is to keep to your recommended preventive maintenance schedule. For Changan, that’s every 10,000 kilometers travelled or every six months (whichever comes first).
Changan Philippines has your back this summer with the 1st Changan Summer Motorist Roadside Assistance” (SMRA). From April 4 to 9, 2022, Changan expert technicians at all Changan dealerships nationwide will be on hand for a FREE 25-point safety inspection — a sneak peek to what Changan’s Vital 5 After Sales program can do to ensure the safety and roadworthiness of your car, not only this summer, but all year through.
In the meantime, brush up on these basic DIY summer car care tips to prevent any premature breakdown or damage, especially during these sweltering months.
- Know your car. Carefully read through your owner’s manual. It contains valuable information that’s specific to your model.
- Break it in gently for the first 1000 km. Drive with care and within speed limits. Avoid overloading it.
- Park under a shade. Intense sunlight can fade the body paint and ruin the upholstery, while high temperatures can damage your engine and battery.
- Give it a weekly wash. Use a mild detergent and, preferably, wash by hand or with a soft bristle brush. (Don’t forget the underside—it’s a dirt trap.)
- Don’t leave it out to air dry: dried water drops leave unsightly specks on the body. Wipe the body down with a good quality chamois.
- Don’t put off removing excess dirt. Old grime, like mud and bird droppings, is tough to clean and you can end up scrubbing and scratching the surface.
- Freshen up the interiors. Moisture from the air, sweat, and your A/C can lead to stinky interiors due to the buildup of mold and bacteria.
- Vacuum your cabin regularly and throw out the trash.
- Invest in special cleaning products for upholstery and other accessories.
- Choose a good, non-intrusive car deodorizer.
- Polish every six months to protect painted surfaces. You don’t have to do it in one go but make sure to cover every panel as you go. Use a quality polish and follow its directions for use.
- Remember BLOWBAGETS before you go.
- Battery. Check for bulging, cracks or leaks. Make sure that battery terminals and cables are securely connected. On average, a car battery lasts 3-5 years but extreme heat can drain it sooner. If your battery is over three years old, have a trained technician test it so that it won’t suddenly die on you!
- Lights. Signal lights, headlights, brake lights, and lights for day driving give other road users a heads up on your driving intentions. Turn on your car to check if all the lights are in good working condition.Replace busted bulbs.
- Oil and oil filter. Extreme heat thins out the oil that lubricates your engine. When you don’t have enough oil, you risk wearing out the moving parts. Check for leaks and make sure your oil is at the correct level. The oil filter keeps dirt and debris from entering your oil system, so make sure it’s clean.
- Water. Check the water in your radiator. You don’t want your car to overheat. Have a few liters of water on hand in your trunk in case you need to cool down your radiator. Note that fluid levels quickly drop with the heat, so make it a habit to check on the levels of your power steering fluid, brake fluid, transmission fluid, windshield fluid, engine oil, and coolant fluid.
- Brakes. Never drive with faulty brakes. Test the brake pedal by pushing it down to the floor. It should feel firm and resistant to pressure.
- Air. Air filters need more attention in hot weather, since there’s more dust around. Dust can enter your engine and clog air passages. Clean air filters help your car breathe better and improve your mileage.
- Air conditioner. Your A/C must be in good condition since you’ll have it on most of the time. Feel the air coming out of your A/C system. If it is not as cool as it should be, then you may have an airflow problem that must be checked.
- Gas. Check your fuel rating & fuel level. A 93-octane rating is highly recommended for an optimum vehicle performance. Gas is cooler early in the day and gets denser as temperatures rise. To get a bang for your buck, gas up early in the morning or later in the evening, when it’s cooler.
- Engine. Check for leaks. If you hear unusual knocking or other similar noises when you start your car, have a professional check it.
- Tires. Driving with worn-out tires can be fatal.
- Check your tire pressurebefore hitting the road, when the tires are still “cool.” The number should correspond to that recommended by your manufacturer. Underinflated tires wear out quickly due to increased friction with the road, and can lead to loss of steering control. On the other hand, overinflated tires can make your ride bumpy and uncomfortable.
- Check for bulges, bumps, tears, or punctures from nails or other sharp objects.
- Check your treads. Insert a coin into the tire’s grooves. If you can still see much of the coin, then the treads are already shallow and worn. Replace those tires soon. It helps to rotate your tries regularly to evenly balance the tread wear.
Nothing beats the joy of driving. By following these tips, you can keep that “new car feel” all year round.