Summer Vehicle Prep How do I prepare my car for summer?

afSummer Vehicle Prep

When it comes to different seasons, there are different things that you should do to your vehicle to help keep it running in perfect condition.  With summer here it is time to start thinking about preparing your vehicle for the summer.

There are several things that you should do when you are thinking about preparing your vehicle for the summer.  They are all important and should all be done to help keeping your vehicle in top shape.


Washing your vehicle

Now that winter is over, it is a good time to thoroughly wash your vehicle.  This is a good idea because the salt and sand from driving on winter roads will cause your vehicle to rust.  I would recommend either hand washing or taking your vehicle to the car wash.  You will want to wash the entire outside and make sure to clean off all salt and sand.  I would recommend using a pressure washer and some car wash soap if you are washing the vehicle at home.   The pressure washer will help get every ounce of salt and sand off of your vehicle.  It would also be a good idea to spray the underside of the vehicle.  This is where car washes come in handy.  This will help remove any salt and sand from the underside of your vehicle and will help prevent rusting.

Vacuuming the Interior

After you wash your vehicle it is a good idea to clean out the interior.  It is a good idea to go through and vacuum the interior of the vehicle.  If you don’t have a shop vac, this SPV40108 Shop Vac will work.  You are going to want to use your vacuum to clean all of the carpet, seats, and floor mats.  This will help remove any sand or other harmful things from ruining your vehicles interior.

Checking Tire Pressure

With the temperature change associated with the summer climate it is a good idea to check your tire pressure.  You will want to look inside your owners manual and find the recommended tire pressure for your vehicle.  You will then need a tire pressure gauge.  If you do not have one this MILS986 Tire Pressure Gauge will work.  You will simply go around and check all of your tires air pressures.  If any are low make sure to fill them up and recheck after filling until you have them inflated to the correct pressure for your vehicle.

Changing your Air Filter

Now that the weather is nice out it would be a good idea to change your air filter in your vehicle.  Not only will it help your vehicle breathe better, but it will help increase your fuel economy when compared to your old dirty air filter.  It is recommended that you change your air filter every year or 15,000 miles.

The procedure for changing your air filter is relatively simple, but we will discuss in more detail this step in case you are unsure how to properly do this.

The Procedure

  1. First you are going to want to look into your owners manual and or go to your local auto parts store and purchase the correct replacement air filter.
  2. You will then want to park your vehicle and make sure it is secure such as the parking brake engaged or in gear.
  3. Open the hood and locate your air filter housing.  It will usually be located towards one fender on the vehicle and will have a tube running to it from the engine.
  4. Use a plain screwdriver to remove the intake tube clamps.
  5. With all of the clamps loosened you will want to then remove the intake pipe.
  6. Next loosen the screws or bolts on the air filter housing.  Sometimes they have little clips that you simply use your finger to remove.  Whatever way simply remove the air filter housing cover.
  7. With the cover off remove the old filter.
  8. Then take an old rag and stick in the throttle body.  This will prevent dirt from entering the engine.
  9. Take the filter housing and use compressed air to clean any dirt and dust out of the filter housing.  Use the same compressed air to remove any dirt or dust from the inside of the intake pipe.
  10. Remove the rag that you placed in the throttle body.
  11. Install the new air filter into the housing, make sure it lays flat.  It should fit in place easily and if you need to force it in then you are putting it in incorrectly.
  12. Reinstall the air filter housing cover using the clips or screws.
  13. Finally reinstall the intake pipe.  Tighten down the clamps using a screwdriver.

That is all there is to replacing your air filter.  Make sure to replace your air filter every 15,000 miles or 1 year.  This will keep your vehicle running at top shape.

These are all some tips on ways to help keep your vehicle running in top condition during the summer.  I hope that you find these tips helpful and will take the time to prepare your vehicle for the summer season.

Written by: Cody Mammenga an NDSCS Student

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