With the end of summer approaching, many Americans will take their cars on one last road trip. While driving is cheaper than flying, a few quick checks can help ensure your trip is trouble-free and you arrive without car problems.
These six car checks from AutoPartsWarehouse.com can identify problems, and many require simple do-it-yourself fixes. According to the website, 60 percent of consumers who do their own car repairs report saving more than $500 per year.
The Bankrate Daily
2 of 7
Car check: Headlights
The problem: Plastic headlight lenses get cloudy over time, reducing headlight strength.
The fix: Replace the clear plastic covers.
3 of 7
Car check: Air-conditioning airflow
The problem: Air conditioning doesn’t have proper flow, or the airflow changes.
The fix: Replace any belts that are worn or loose and remove obstructions from condenser blades that may prevent airflow.
4 of 7
Car check: Engine temperature
The problem: Engine not staying cool, possibly causing overheating.
The fix: Clean radiator blades if they are dirty or obstructed. Replace thermostat for electric fan if it’s not turning on. Replenish coolant in overflow tank. Replace fan belt if it’s loose or worn.
5 of 7
Car check: Tire pressure
The problem: Tires are low on air pressure, reducing fuel economy and increasing the risk of a blowout.
The fix: Add air to reach the recommended pressure, which is listed in the owner’s manual and on a sticker on the driver’s side doorjamb.
6 of 7
Car check: Air and cabin filters
The problem: Air and cabin filters are dirty and ineffective at removing impurities, causing engine trouble or reducing air quality inside the passenger compartment.
The fix: Replace the filters.
7 of 7
Car check: Oil level and quality
The problem: Oil level is low or oil is dirty.
The fix: Add the appropriate-weight oil and amount so it is full, or perform a complete oil change, which includes fresh oil and a new oil filter.