Fall Automobile Preparations

The fall months bring a different set of challenges than other seasons that you have to prepare your car to handle. The weather goes from post-summer comfort to cold and icy. The roads become unpleasant and even dangerous for drivers. It is necessary to take extra precaution and prepare your car for the fall months to ensure your safety and your car’s survival through that period.

Check and Change Your Fluids

Ensuring that all your car’s fluids are clean, and tanks are topped off is crucial when making sure that your car is ready for the cold temperatures coming. Colder temperatures can make the fluids in your automobile change and become thicker. When this happens their movement through your car’s engine is slowed. For this reason, you should make sure to give special care to your coolant by making sure to drain as well as replace it, since the ratio of water to coolant changes with the rising and falling of the temperature. In addition to this, another fluid that should be addressed is the car’s oil. This is important to do at the recommended oil change interval for your vehicle. It’s considered a good idea to complete an oil change before the chill arrives, particularly if you’re doing it yourself, although this is true even if you visit a professional for assistance. Colder temperatures cause the motor oil to thicken as discussed earlier. This makes it more difficult for the engine to turn over throughout the colder months.

 

Check the Brakes

One of the most essential things to check off of your safety checklist is a brake review. The reason why it is so important to conduct a review of the condition your brakes are in is that they are essential for safe driving. Brake pads, as well as rotors, tend to wear out faster as more problems with brakes take place during months where the temperature is low. Frozen break lines that are caused by cold air can make themselves known due to the grinding and squeaking noises that produce.

 

It is important to get your brakes checked before the Fall season begins. The reason for this is that cold weather increases the likeliness of brake problems since the roads have the potential of becoming slippery from a variety of hazards. The hazards people usually consider the most dangerous are snow and ice, although a batch of wet leaves that have recently fallen off a tree can pose just as much as a threat. This is why it is important to listen for unusual noises that may point to failing brake pads and stay ahead of any concerns.

Tips for Keeping a Clean Windshield

Cleaning your windshield may seem like a quick and simple process but it’s a bit more complex than you may think. We are going to walk you through the best products and methods to help you get a sparkling windshield.

Windshield Cleaning Solutions

Glass cleaners are easy to find in any supermarket, but which one is right for you? Generic is the easiest way to go and there is nothing wrong with that, but if you’re looking for a little more of a bang for your buck, products like Rainx can give you more benefits. They contain hydrophobic properties that let the water roll off your windshield easier, allowing for better visibility in the rain. If you like to use concentrated products that require adding water, we suggest using distilled water as opposed to tap.

Distilled water has no left-over minerals or chemicals meaning less streaking. You can also use white vinegar in a 50/50 solution with distilled water as well. Vinegar’s acidic composition breaks down the accumulated film on glass with ease.

Windshield Cleaning Products

Next, you will need something to wipe the window with. Surprisingly, newspaper works wonders when it comes to windshield cleaning, leaving a streak-free shine. If you want to get fancy, microfiber clothes are a great idea as well. These clothes are reusable and can last you a very long time, but you must keep them from getting contaminated by other chemicals and prevent abrasive materials from getting attached to them. Keeping a separate wash basket for these and washing them separate from other items is suggested if you have enough for a small load. If not, hand washing with a mild detergent and hang drying the clothes somewhere clean will do the trick.

Windshield Cleaning Process

First and foremost, it’s important to park in a cooler environment because a hot windshield will make your window cleaning solution evaporate too quickly. Be sure to clean the front and rear windows first, since they are the most important and they have tight corners and odd angles. You might want to tackle these in the beginning, leaving the easy work for last. Start with the outer edges of the windshield – this is where they are most neglected and collect the most dirt. Once that is complete, work on the center of the windshield.

To determine where streaking may be located, use different strokes on both sides of the glass. Maybe left to right on the inside, then up and down on the outside. Working on your side windows is a breeze compared to the front and rear. Start off with rolling the window down part way first and wiping off the top edge. Continue by rolling the window up and clean up those edges and corners before you start the center of the windshield.

The Risks of Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents in the United States. Distracted driving includes the texting and driving and using your phone for other purposes while driving, along with other activities such as attending to a child or eating. While texting and driving is a serious issue in itself, “distracted driving” also recognizes that many accidents are caused by cell phone usage that is not necessarily texting, such as the use of social media and other apps.

The risks and dangers of distracted driving are severe. The NHTSA estimates that distracted driving results in 3,000 fatalities every year. In 2012, one in every 10 accident was caused by distraction. Researchers have found that just talking on a cell phone while driving quadruples the chance of getting into a motor accident. Checking your cell phone for five seconds while driving (about the time it takes to read a text message) would result in traveling 300 feet without looking at the road, if driving at highway speeds. Teenage drivers are the biggest offenders, with 11 percent of teens in accidents admitting they were driving distracted. However, people of all ages have been found to participate in distracted driving.

The dangers of distracted driving should not be underestimated. They are a leading cause of motor vehicle accidents in the U.S., yet many drivers do not take the risks seriously. Lead by example while behind the wheel and keep your cellphone put away at all times while driving.