How To Maintain Your Car And Prepare It For The Spring And Summer

Parts & Accessories, Service, Tips, Used Cars, Wheel Alignment, Wheels & Tires, Winter

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If you’re in Winnipeg, spring and summer may seem far off – it doesn’t even usually get above freezing until early April – but it’s never too soon to start thinking about what you’ll have to do to prepare your vehicle for the warmer months. The longevity of any car – new or used – depends on you taking appropriate action to keep it maintained, happy, and in good condition.

So in this article, we’ll take a look at a few of the basic steps you should take to get your car out of its winter parka – and into shorts and a t-shirt, so to speak – and get ready for the warmth. We promise it’s coming – even if you’re freezing in Winnipeg as you read this.

Check Your Air Pressure And Remove Your Winter Tires

Chances are that, if you’re not using winter tires in Manitoba, you haven’t made it through the winter, and have wrapped your car around a telephone pole by now.

Just kidding – but seriously, since winter tires are basically mandatory in our great frozen North, you have to make sure that you get those winter tires off, and put your warm-weather tires back on. Winter tires are unnecessary in warm weather, and bare, dry pavement wears them out much more quickly than snowy, cold conditions, so you don’t want to drive around on them once the roads have thawed.

This is much easier to do if you have two full sets of wheels – even though that can be expensive, it will make it easier for you to reinstall your warm weather tires, even with just a tire iron and a jack. You also won’t have to constantly get your tires rebalanced, which can save you a bit of money in the long run.

Make sure that your warm weather tires are properly inflated – you should have a small sticker on your door jamb that tells you ideal inflation PSI, and you can always look in your owner’s manual.

Check The A/C

Unless you’re some kind of crazy person, you probably weren’t blasting your A/C in the middle of a Manitoba winter. So chances are that you haven’t used it much – and that means that it could be failing or working improperly, and you wouldn’t even know it.

Run your A/C system for a bit to ensure that it’s blowing steadily, cold, and there are no strange odors or noises coming from the system. If there seem to be issues, you can take action yourself – or bring it to a mechanic of your choice to see what repairs need to be made. (By the way, did we mention that Ride Time just installed eight new service bays at our new location? Just letting you know!)

Check Your Wipers And Wiper Fluid

You’ve likely been plowing through your wiper fluid de-icing your windshield, and clearing away grime and salt deposits, so you’ll want to make sure your fluid levels are solid.

In addition, the heavy ice and snow of winter can take a toll on windshield wiper blades – you may have loose rubber, poor windshield contact, or other issues. Run them across your windshield a couple times with plenty of fluid to see if they’re streaking or otherwise malfunctioning – and pick up some new ones if they’re not performing well.

Pop That Hood!

You’re probably not spending much time outside working on your car in the winter – and who can blame you? But once it’s warming up outside, you’ve got the perfect opportunity to get a good idea of what’s going on under your hood.

  • Check the battery – Check for corrosion on your battery terminals – this can be easily cleaned off with just a toothbrush, a bit of baking soda, and some elbow grease. Make sure to disconnect the battery first – or you’ll be in for quite a shock (literally).  
  • Oil – Check your oil level, and make sure that it’s topped up. Take your car in for an oil change if it’s due – old, sludgy oil can cause some major engine issues in the hot weather of spring and summer. 
  • Top Up Your Coolant – Check the level of coolant in your car, and make sure that it’s nice and clear, not cloudy – cloudy coolant could be a sign of oil mixing with your coolant, and should be drained and discarded. Top up your coolant levels with a pre-mixed antifreeze product. 
  • Check Brake Fluid – If you’re low on brake fluid, don’t top it off – this is a sign that your brake pads could be wearing down. Take your car to a service station to get it checked out, and ensure that your brakes are in tip-top shape.

Give It A Wash

Your car went through a lot this winter – it’s been peppered by ice, snow, sleet, and maybe even hail! – not to mention the mud grime, and salt that’s everywhere on Manitoba streets.

So give it a thorough cleaning – all this grime is hard on your paint, and can lead to rust and corrosion if left on your car for too long. You can either detail your car yourself, or take it to a carwash to have a thorough cleaning performed.

Come To Ride Time For Your Spring And Summer Service Needs!

Air conditioner not working? Looking for another set of summer tires? Need to check your brakes? Come to Ride Time today!
Our new location is complete with 8 service bays and 4 detailing bays – and we can take a look at your car and get it ready for the warmer months. Our experts will have your car in top-notch shape, and ready for the Winnipeg summer, guaranteed!

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