5 tips on how your car can survive traveling during this summer heat?
Summer travel can absolutely be one of the more pleasant experiences one can have during their vehicle’s lifespan, whether it be traveling over summer break or even just traveling to local areas. The feeling of windows rolled down, everyone out of school, and sunglasses out is almost a recipe for feeling like a Hollywood star when you catch the perfect crosswind.
With that kind of glamor in mind, one might forget that there are a few road dangers unique to summer driving that everyone should be mindful of.
There are a few issues that your vehicle could experience, notably in the summertime. Fortunately, most of these issues are pretty easy to grapple with and fix:
- Cooling system strain
- Engine overheating
- Tire overheating
- Shortened battery life and car fluid dry-up
One doesn’t really encounter these issues outside of extreme summer heat, so keeping them in mind during uniquely hot days isn’t going to be any kind of long-term mental task. For a few of these, the best OBD2 scanners can even pick up on issues that aren’t immediately visible to you. That’s actually a reason finding the best OBD2 scanner for you is an important part of summer travel. Carrying around the best OBD2 scanner for your car is paramount to being able to track vital vehicle information any time you want.
For best results with these specific issues, we’ve compiled some expert solutions!
1. Mind your car’s cooling system
Your vehicle’s cooling system is designed to run anytime the car is on. That being said, cars are not entirely built to protect you during inclement weather, and extreme heat is no exception.
In order to best protect your car’s cooling system, it’s smart to do simple things, like blowing out all your car’s hot air before turning on the AC. Use the outside air fan for this. Park in the shade to reduce the sunlight entering your car and roll all your windows down. Cleaning radiators and air filters can prevent heat dispersion from your engine, as well. When you run your AC, start at the lowest point and gradually go higher.
The main takeaway here is that your car’s AC is not like the AC in your home, which is designed to operate independently. Your car’s AC accumulates power from your accelerator, so be mindful not to overwhelm it.
2. Your vehicle is designed to protect its own engine
The coolant in your car is a chemical failsafe of sorts which is designed to ensure that your engine does not overheat. Summer is obviously notorious for slews of overheated engines nationwide, but you can avoid this. Make sure your coolant is fresh at all times during extreme heat. It gets dispersed through the engine and artificially reduces heat. Another thing you can do to take away heat from your engine from the *outside* is to turn your vehicle’s heat on with the windows down, redirecting all the hot air away from sensitive vehicle components.
The best OBD2 scanners are capable of receiving information from your engine as well. In fact, the best OBD2 scanners will often tell you exactly what is wrong with your engine through the use of an OBD2 code, so where the “check engine” light lets you know where the issue lies, your OBD2 scanner will tell you exactly what’s wrong.
3. Don’t let your tires overheat!
Air expands in the heat, and the air in your tires is no exception. While this may not cause a full-on tire blowout, it can stimulate a leak in your tire or around the rim simply due to pressure change. One might think that the solution for this issue is to let out some tire air to allow the tire’s air to expand slowly, but this is not the case. In fact, underfilled tires tend to heat up more quickly and will affect the way your car takes turns. Because of this, the best thing to do is consult your driver’s manual for how to properly care for your tires, as most manuals include the temperature ratings for tires and will instruct you on tire care at different heat levels. Taking care of the outside of your tires is also key in making sure you handle summer correctly. Regular spraying with a cleaning solution to remove debris can prevent cracking. Taking corners slowly can prevent heating caused by friction.
4. Extreme heat can even dry out your battery and car fluids
Essentially, any substance that consists of mobile molecules will go “faster” in heat. This includes electricity. Any fluid in your car will expand and act differently during hot weather, and electricity in your battery will go faster and act a little more erratically. Not only this but, your car battery contains sensitive liquids and wires which are also affected by heat. This makes the electricity flow faster, but the components of your car battery are more resistant to the flow of electricity. Car batteries need extra care in the summer. Heat is also one of the most common reasons for frequent oil changes. Keep your fluids and your battery topped off. You can take the battery out of your vehicle to get it charged up, and automotive shops can tell you when your fluids are too high.
You can use the best OBD2 scanner to run some basic diagnostics in the summer as well. For example, an OBD2 scanner is capable of showing you how quickly your car’s oil heats up. An OBD2 scanner is meant to preempt dashboard indicators through other various information.
5. Do your research!
These are just a few of the most likely issues your vehicle can experience under the extreme summer heat, but for a more exhaustive list, it’s smart to always do some research and prepare before taking on the new season! Having the best OBD2 scanner on hand can also help you mitigate issues before they even arise!