STATE – Corrosive substances used by road crews – including winter road salt and brine, as well as the residual slush that splashes on vehicles after snowy days – plus, grime and oxidization can easily turn a showroom car into a rust-bucket.
AAA Mid-Atlantic offers the following spring car care tips:
- Wash every inch of the car, from top to bottom and from its front grille to its rear bumpers – and that includes the under-body and each wheel well – to remove traces of salt, brine, sand, and road de-icing chemicals.
- 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 owners 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.
AAA Mid-Atlantic, serves nearly four million members in parts of New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia, and throughout Delaware, Maryland and the District of Columbia, and is on the Web at aaa.com/community.
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