If you live in Florida, you likely have your car’s air conditioning system running most of the year. The heat is a source of discomfort inside the cabin, but it’s important to remember that a car sitting in the sun all day will see some wear and tear over time too.
Learning how to protect your car in extreme heat can prolong the life of your investment. Check out our guide to combat sun damage during the hottest times of the season.
Protecting Your Car From the Heat Is Crucial for Safety
Frequent exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays and heat can hurt your ride in two ways — we’re talking about the cosmetic appearance of your automobile as well as its reliability.
Leaving your car parked outdoors during summer may cause the exterior paint to crack or fade. Your car’s paint and exterior coatings help prevent rust development on the body, so try to keep your vehicle out of direct sunlight if possible.
Additionally, many automotive systems and parts are sensitive to extreme heat. Forgetting to protect your car from the Florida heat can lead to tire blowouts, transmission problems, dead batteries and a loss of brake performance — any of which could leave you stranded. Preparing your vehicle for summer weather only takes a few moments, and doing so can save you money.
1. Check Your Tires
Ensuring you have enough air in your tires improves fuel economy and provides a smooth ride. Properly inflated tires also reduce your risk of a blowout.
When driving in the summer, use a tire pressure gauge periodically to make sure your car’s tire pressure readings follow the recommendations in your owner’s manual. Be sure to check on the spare as well.
2. Prioritize Engine Maintenance
Your vehicle’s engine heats up as you drive, then relies on liquid coolant moving through the radiator to keep internal temperatures down. For your car’s health, check coolant levels frequently so the engine can operate efficiently. You’ll also want to attend to any coolant leaks immediately.
The oil moving through your engine lubricates parts and dissipates heat. Scheduling service with a reliable automotive shop for oil changes helps you keep your ride in peak operating condition.
3. Cover Your Vehicle’s Exterior Paint
Waxing your car’s paint and applying protective films helps block UV rays, but it’s still best to park in the shade or use a car cover. If you live in an apartment complex or other area without protected parking, consider paying for access to a covered garage.
4. Air Conditioning System Maintenance
When was the last time you added refrigerant under the hood? A refrigerant charge is responsible for cooling the air that comes through your interior vents.
If you’re wondering how to protect your car’s interior surfaces in extreme heat, maintaining your vehicle’s air conditioning system is a great place to start. Run your air conditioner system while you’re driving to keep seat upholsteries, dash surfaces, door trims and other components at a reasonable temperature and give them a break from the heat.
5. Inspect Your Car Battery
Car batteries contain fluid to support their operation. In hot climates, the liquid inside a car battery can evaporate, making it impossible for you to start your vehicle. To prevent a bad battery from stranding you, it’s a wise practice to pop the hood periodically and visually inspect the battery for leaks or rust spots.
Having an experienced professional change out your battery when it approaches the end of its service life can save you from getting stranded on the side of the road.
Make an Appointment With Irish Mike’s Total Car Care for Maintenance and Repairs
Irish Mike’s Total Car Care has been helping customers in Orlando, Florida, with vehicle repairs since 1995. We’re a family-owned automotive shop that knows how to protect your car from sun damage and extreme heat.