The holiday road is a tough place to breakdown. The heat, dust, and traffic will take their toll on your vehicle and your patience. Whether it is summer or winter, you could be poised for a breakdown at any time. However, you can lessen the odds of mechanical failure through periodic maintenance. Your vehicle should last longer and exhibit greater reliability!
A marginally operating system will fail in hot weather. Have the system examined by a qualified technician.
The greatest cause of summer breakdowns is overheating. The cooling system should be completely flushed and refilled about every 24 months. The level, condition, and concentration of the coolant should be checked periodically. Never remove the radiator cap until the engine has thoroughly cooled! The tightness and condition of drive belts, clamps, and hoses should be checked by our service professional.
Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual-more often (every 5,000 kms) if you make frequent short trips, extended trips with large loads, or tow a trailer with substantial loads.
Replace other filters (air, fuel etc.) as recommended--more often when in dusty conditions.
A dirty windshield causes eye fatigue and can pose a safety hazard. Replace worn blades and install windshield washer solvent.
Inspect all lights and bulbs; replace inoperable bulbs; periodically clean dirt and insects from all lenses. To prevent scratching, never use a dry rag.
Check tyre pressures once a month; Don't forget your spare tyre, and be sure the jack is in good condition. Examine tyres for tread life, uneven wearing, and scalaping; check the sidewalls for cuts and nicks. An alignment is required if there's uneven tread wear or if your vehicle pulls to one side.
Brakes should be inspected as recommended in your manual, or sooner if you notice pulsations, grabbing, noises, or longer stopping distance. Minor brake problems should be corrected promptly.
Batteries can fail any time of year. The only accurate way to detect a weak battery is with professional equipment. Routine care: Scrape away corrosion from posts and cable connections; clean all surfaces; re-tighten all connections. If battery caps are removable, check the level monthly. Avoid contact with corrosive deposits and battery acid. Wear eye protection and rubber gloves.
Carry some basic tools--ask a technician for suggestions. Also include a first aid kit and a flashlight.