Will you be heading out in your car this summer? Then make sure your vehicle is safe and roadworthy, by having it inspected and serviced at your local AA Auto Centre.
Getting your car ready now will reduce the chances of something going wrong when you’re on the road, giving you the reassurance you need to get on with enjoying your summer holiday.
Below is a checklist of just some of the things that need to be carefully monitored in the warmer months. Remember, our AA Motoring guarantee protects you for 12 months or 20,000km (whichever comes first) after your service date. It covers defective new parts or service work undertaken.
Cooling systems need to be checked for leaks, and to make sure hoses are secure and in good condition - not hard, cracked or starting to bulge. Radiator core fins should be in good condition and not blocked.
If the coolant water has not been changed within the past two years, the cooling system needs to be drained, flushed and refilled with clean water and the correct coolant additive.
Cambelts and fan belts
Cambelt and fan belt failure is common. If you don’t know when they were last changed, these should be checked. Most Japanese vehicle cambelts should be changed every 100,000km or every five years, whilst many European vehicles have change times between 40,000 and 60,000km.
This is also a good time to have other drive belts checked for damage.
Air and fuel filters
Air filters need to be checked and, if necessary, replaced. As fuel filters are usually sealed units, they can’t be checked for blockages so should be replaced regularly.
Worn spark plugs can lead to engines misfiring and the eventual breakdown of the high tension leads, so check and replace if necessary.
Engine and transmission oil
Engine and transmission needs to be checked for oil leakage. If the engine oil and oil filter hasn't been changed within the past 12 months, have it done.
Wheels should be removed so that your brake condition can be checked.
As tyres roll along the road they generate heat, especially on hot days. If tyre pressures are low, the combination of heat and excessive movement of the tyre sidewall can lead to a blow-out. Tyres must be checked for excessive or unusual wear patterns and for any lumps or tread distortion, as well as pressure. And don't forget the spare.
Exhaust leaks can cause deadly carbon monoxide fumes to build up in the cabin, leading to a loss of engine power. They also increase fuel consumption.