Planning a summer road trip? If so, then let’s take some time to make sure that your car is in tip-top shape before you add any extra wear and tear in that oppressive heat. So, pop open your hood and follow these simple tips before you set off on that sunny vacay!

  1. Don’t neglect that radiator

    Sure, we all have the habit of checking our oil every 7,000 miles or so, but how often do you examine the coolant in your radiator? All you need to do is pop your hood and see whether the liquid reaches the “full” line. If it looks a bit scant, then replenish with a 50/50 mix of coolant and distilled water.

    It’s also important to note that coolant hoses can become damaged over time; so, while you are under the hood, be sure to examine it for any cracks, holes, or marks of wear.

  2. Maintain your battery

    It’s no secret that hot weather can really take its toll on your car’s battery. In fact, it’s a common misconception that winter is the worst time for car battery life—as it turns out, more of them die during the summertime!

    To combat this, it’s important that you make sure all terminals are corrosion-free and that your water levels are normal. To clean those terminals, use a baking soda mixture – you can learn how to do this here – and as far as water goes, refill with distilled H2O only.

  3. Give your A/C some TLC

    It may seem like a no-brainer to maintain your car’s air conditioning before summer hits, but we thought that a gentle reminder wouldn’t hurt! Before you take it straight in for a wellness check, first do this simple test at home:

    Start by putting a thermometer in the vent and start cranking that A/C; once the number levels out, write it down, then consult your car’s manual to see how cold the temperature should get when idling.

  4. Keeping your cabin cool will keep you cool

    OK, so this one doesn’t necessarily have to do with the overall health of your car, but we thought we would add it so that you don’t end up enduring symptoms of heat stroke while on your way to the beach!

    It probably goes without saying, but always try to park under a shady spot, and before you lock up, pop in a reflecting sun visor to cover your windshield. If you have leather interior, then drape light-colored towels over the seats and steering wheel. This one simple step will save you from having to turn on the A/C to “cool down” the car before you get in!

You definitely don’t need to be a mechanic to complete these, right? To learn about even more helpful car cooling tips, be sure to click on the video below!

What do you think of these car maintenance reminders? Do you perform these checks regularly? Are there any other ways you keep your car cool in the summertime? Tell us all about your thoughts and experiences in the comments section below!