As the leaves start to change colors and the air turns crisp, it's a sure sign that fall has arrived. While you may be excited about pumpkin spice lattes and cozy sweaters, your car deserves some attention, too. The transition from summer to fall brings its own set of challenges for your vehicle, and if you drive an electric vehicle (EV), there are also specific considerations to keep in mind.
Check Your Tires
The first order of business as fall arrives is to check your tires. Cooler temperatures can cause your tire pressure to drop, affecting your vehicle's handling and fuel efficiency. Ensure your tires are properly inflated, and consider switching to winter tires if you live in an area with harsh winter conditions. Proper tire care will keep you safe on the road.
Inspect Your Brakes
Brakes are a critical safety component in any vehicle. Make sure to have your brake pads and rotors inspected. If you hear any unusual noises or notice decreased braking performance, it's time to visit a mechanic. Safe stopping is crucial, especially when roads become slippery from fallen leaves.
Change the Oil
Regular oil changes are essential for maintaining your car's engine. As temperatures drop, using the right type of oil for your vehicle and climate is crucial. Cold weather can cause thicker oil to flow less efficiently, potentially damaging the engine. Consult your owner's manual or a mechanic to ensure you're using the appropriate oil for the season.
Inspect Your Battery
Fall is notorious for draining car batteries. Have your battery tested to ensure it's in good condition. For EV owners, this step is especially important, as electric vehicle batteries can be affected by extreme temperatures. Consider installing a battery heater if you live in an area with frigid winters to preserve your EV's range.
Clean and Wax Your Car
Keep your car looking its best by thoroughly washing and waxing it at least once a week. This not only enhances its appearance but also protects the paint from falling leaves, debris, and winter road salt.
Check Your Lights
With shorter daylight hours in the fall, your lights become even more critical. Ensure all your exterior lights, including headlights, taillights, and turn signals, are functioning correctly. Replace any bulbs that are burned out. EV owners can benefit from LED lighting, which is not only energy-efficient but also provides better visibility.
Prepare an Emergency Kit
Lastly, it's wise to prepare an emergency kit for your car. Include items like a flashlight, jumper cables, a blanket, and non-perishable snacks. This kit can be a lifesaver if you find yourself stranded due to unexpected fall weather.
Specific Tip for EV Owners: Keep an Eye on Range
For electric vehicle owners, fall can bring about a decrease in range due to lower temperatures. Be mindful of this and plan your trips accordingly. Pre-conditioning your EV while it's still plugged in can help maintain its range. Additionally, make use of regenerative braking to maximize efficiency, especially when driving downhill.
D. Wells Automotive Service is your car's best friend when it comes to pre-seasonal maintenance and repairs. Visit us, and the team will make short work of any issue that occurs during the summer!