By Jeremy Rochow
Published: Monday, November 11, 2019
You know it’s summer when you get in your car and you’re burnt by the scalding steering wheel and seatbelt buckle at the same time.
With the mercury rising and blistering temperatures on the horizon, you’ll want to make sure your car can handle the heat.
From checking your coolant to covering up, here are a few things you can do to prepare your ride for our hottest season.
1. Keep hydrated
It’s not just humans who need to keep their fluids topped up during the hotter months.
You’ll want to regularly check your car’s coolant levels to make sure it doesn’t overheat.
Only check the coolant level when the engine’s cold, otherwise liquid could spurt out and burn you.
To check your levels, look at the plastic flow bottle which will have both low and high line markings.
The coolant should be filled to halfway between the 2 lines.
You can also check your coolant by unscrewing the radiator pressure cap – it should reach the top of the radiator neck.
If you do need to top up the system, only use the recommended coolant or water,
and avoid mixing types as they can turn into a jelly-like substance and clog your cooling system.
2. Stay cool
Nobody wants to drive around in an oven, so before we experience our first heatwave, it’s probably a good idea to test out your air con.
If it isn’t working as well as it used to, take it to a certified technician and have it serviced.
Have them replace the cabin air filter if it hasn’t been changed in 6 months.
3. Seek shade
To avoid a cracked dashboard and warped interior plastics, you’ll want to protect your car from the harsh summer sun.
While parking in the shade is ideal, it’s not always possible. Invest in a windscreen sun shade to help lower the internal temperature of your car and protect its interior.
Sun shades can also stop your seatbelt buckle and steering wheel from becoming searing hot.
If your car is parked in the sun for long periods, invest in a car cover to stop your paint fading and prevent dirt and debris from becoming baked into the paintwork.
4. Ensure you’ve got a summer view
During summer, the sun stays on the horizon for longer, making it harder to see east in the morning and west in the evening.
If your windscreen is dirty, visibility – especially during these times – will be even worse.
To clear away dust and dirt, it’s essential to have working windscreen wipers. If they’re looking a bit crusty, replace them.
You’ll also want to make sure your windscreen wiper fluid is topped up, and when cleaning your car’s interior, don’t forget to wipe the inside of your windscreen with a microfibre cloth to remove smudges and dust.