Spring car care tips from AAA

AAA-LogoAAA reminds motorists to spring clean vehicles to remove the remnants of corrosive substances used by road crews – including winter road salt and brine that can turn a showroom car into a rust-bucket. With springtime temperatures here, there is no time like the present to get into gear.

It’s time to be pro-active in flushing the salt, brine, sand, road de-icing chemicals and other liquid agents from your car. To keep damage at bay, wash every inch of the car – from top to bottom and from the front grille to the rear bumpers – including the under-body and each wheel well.

But that’s not all:

  • Check the tires – It’s crucial to check your tires after weather changes because tire pressure can fluctuate about 1 pound per square inch for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit change in temperature.
  • Check the wiper blades – Windshield wipers take a beating during the winter – clearing away dirt, debris and salt spray. Make sure the blades are making full contact with the windshield and have not dried out.
  • Rotate the tires – This should be done roughly every 5,000-10,000 miles and it can extend the life of your tires significantly by reducing wear.
  • Change oil and filter – Keep to the manufacturers’ recommendation and change your oil and filter in accordance with the vehicle owner’s manual. Usually every 3,000 to 5,000 miles.
  • Change the air filter – Your car’s air filter prevents dust and other debris from getting into the engine’s running parts, meaning less efficient use of gas and weaker engine performance.
  • Check the belts and hoses – Winter weather takes a toll on your car’s belts and hoses making them more likely to break. Visibly inspect them for wear. Replace glazed or frayed belts or bulging hoses.
  • Check battery and plugs – Make sure battery posts and connections are clean. Spark plugs fire as many as 3 million times every 1,000 miles.
  • Clean the interior – Residual salt and sand that was brought into the interior of the vehicle can damage floor mats and carpet. Use a hand vacuum to remove dirt and debris from the floor and seats of your vehicle.

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