Did you know April is National Car Care Month? While we might be a bit early on the spring maintenance checklist, at AA Auto Tech, we’re here to make sure you get a jump start on taking great care of your vehicle this year.
In the Twin Cities, freezing temperatures, harsh outdoor conditions, and plenty of road salt can do a number on your vehicle throughout winter. Come spring, it’ll need some extra TLC to continue running optimally throughout summer and beyond.
To help you make sure you get everything taken care of, we’ve outlined a simple six-step maintenance checklist below.
Get Your Battery Tested
Extreme temperatures — both hot and cold — can wreak havoc on your vehicle’s battery. Freezing temps slow down the battery’s chemical reactions while super hot temps can cause battery fluid to evaporate and corrosion to set in.
To make sure your battery is in good working condition after months of cold weather, get it tested at your local auto shop. A quick test will confirm whether it’s holding a charge well or if it’s on the verge of dying.
Your auto mechanic will let you know if replacing the battery is a good idea, and if you’re almost due for a new one, take care of it early — before you end up stranded in a parking lot.
Schedule an Oil Change and Filter Replacement
If you didn’t get an oil change during winter, spring is the time to schedule one. Oil becomes less effective as it ages, which is why auto mechanics recommend oil and filter changes at 3,000- to 5,000-mile intervals. If your vehicle has a built-in detection system, you can wait for the oil change light to illuminate.
Replace Your Wiper Blades
After a harsh winter, your vehicle’s wipers are likely looking a bit haggard. Spring is the perfect time to replace them before the rainy season sets in. While you’re at it, give your wiper fluid reservoir a look. If you’re low on fluid, top up the tank before it slips your mind. You don’t want to end up with a muddy windshield and no wiper fluid to speak of!
Check Your Radiator Fluid and Top It Up
Your vehicle’s radiator fluid plays a critical role year-round: keeping the engine at the proper operating temperature. Throughout months of freezing temperatures, that fluid worked hard to keep your engine cranking, and certain additives in the fluid become less effective over time. That’s why, come spring, topping up the fluid is so important!
When summer weather sets in, you’ll need plenty of fluid to keep your engine from overheating. Getting your coolant checked and topped up during spring is an excellent way to be proactive about keeping your engine in proper working order.
Check Tire Tread and Switch Out Your Tires
If you use studded snow tires throughout winter, you already know they need to be switched out for standard tires come spring. But if you use all-season tread, you may also benefit from a new set of tires when spring arrives, depending on the condition of your existing tires.
Check out our blog, How to Tell When It’s Time to Replace Your Tires for more information.
Schedule an Engine Tune-Up
If you own an older vehicle with a non-electronic ignition, it likely needs an engine tuneup every 10,000 to 20,000 miles. Newer vehicles can go as far as 25,000 to 100,000 miles before they require a major tune-up. Not sure what type of ignition you have? Check out your vehicle manual for factory-recommended tuneup intervals.
Schedule Auto Repair & Maintenance at AA Auto Tech in the Twin Cities
Ready to be proactive about your spring vehicle maintenance? Bring your car or truck to our auto mechanics at AA Auto Tech! Since 1979, we’ve proudly served the auto repair and maintenance needs of drivers throughout Hastings, MN and the surrounding Twin Cities metro, and we’re here for you too. To get started, give us a call at 651-437-2218 or contact us online for more information.