Fall is in the air! Cool breezes are wafting through the trees as the leaves change colors, and we start to prepare ourselves for winter. While we’re enjoying the fall weather before winter descends upon us, we have to ensure our cars are ready for the change in seasons as well. To be certain that you don’t miss anything important, our team at Redman’s Muffler & Automotive has put together a fall auto repair checklist.
Here’s a handy list of everything auto repair you should tackle this fall.
First things first: let’s start with the basics. There are certain things that you should do anyway as part of your regular maintenance schedule. But if it’s been a bit since you’ve done them, add them to your checklist this fall.
- Change your oil. The best and easiest way to extend the life of your vehicle is to change your oil regularly. If your car takes regular oil, you should change it every 3,000 miles, or 7,000 if your car takes synthetic oil.
- Top off the other fluids. Check the levels of your brake fluid, power steering fluid, transmission fluid, and windshield washer fluid, and top them off if they need it.
- Check your tire pressure. When the weather gets really cold, it can affect your tire pressure. Make sure it’s at the right level now, and then check it periodically, especially after a very cold night.
- Test your battery. Cold weather can reduce the battery’s efficiency. Check that it can hold a charge now so that you’re not stuck with a dead battery in the cold.
The Important Systems
The next thing to do is to check that all your car’s important systems and parts are in good working order.
- Check your brakes. Listen for any unusual noises when you engage your brakes and check your brake pads and rotors. If they’ve worn down, now is the time to replace them.
- Inspect the exhaust system. Look for holes in your exhaust or any rusty spots. Winter roads can make these problems worse, so you should deal with them now before the roads are covered with ice and salt.
- Look at the belts and hoses. Belts and hoses play an important role in the operation of your engine. Look for cracks and signs of wear and replace any that look bad. Cold weather makes them brittle and more susceptible to wear and tear.
- Test the heater and defroster. You don’t want to get caught in the cold! Test your heater and defroster so you don’t freeze while you drive.
The Finishing Touches
Finally, there are a few external things you should take care of before it gets too cold and you have to deal with ice and snow.
- Replace your wiper blades. Few things are more frustrating than trying to clear your windshield with bad wiper blades. Have a look at yours and replace them if necessary.
- Test your lights. There are a lot of lights in your car. Test them all and replace any dead bulbs or repair faulty sockets.
- Clean and wax the exterior. It’s not strictly necessary, but cleaning and waking your car will help protect it from salt and sand.
- Get an emergency kit. Keep anything you might need in an emergency in your car. We recommend having jumper cables, a flashlight, a blanket, and a first aid kit.