Summer Vehicle Service Checklist | Safford of Warrenton

March 28th, 2018 by

In each new season, it’s important to keep your car in tip-top shape and running smoothly. Taking advantage of preventative repairs and maintenance could save you major dough in broken parts down the line. For auto service in Warrenton, you need to account for winter temperatures and mild snowfall causing salt on the roadway. Those two factors can decrease car battery life, as well as cause general wear and tear to the underside of the vehicle. By the time summer rolls around, the damage done in the winter months will need to be addressed, as well as general car care needs. Before taking your big cross-country vacation with the family, there are many essentials to ensure your car keeps your family moving in comfort.

At Safford of Warrenton, we pride ourselves on our excellent service center, with an expert staff ready to maintain your vehicle on all levels. Anything Northern Virginia can throw at your vehicle in the colder months, we’re prepared to tackle. That’s why we’ve created this comprehensive summer service checklist to keep your vehicle deserves running great!


You know the feeling of driving a freshly-aligned vehicle. Holding onto the wheel and knowing the vehicle won’t fight you to pull one way or the other is truly a symbiotic experience with your car. The more you drive, the more your rims shift from that perfect center balance we all know and love. Another disturbance caused by alignment issues is uneven tire wear. When your alignment is out of whack, your tires become overexposed to the road in some spots and underexposed in others. Wheel alignment corrects all of these issues as they crop up and can improve the life of your tires drastically.
We recommend getting your tires aligned at least once a year to keep that balance and get the most out of your tires.

Each tire is affected differently by movement of the vehicle, which causes tires to wear down differently. Tire rotation and wheel balancing help tires wear more evenly by shifting them around to different positions on the vehicle.
This service goes hand-in-hand with wheel alignment. It’s a good rule of thumb to rotate and balance your tires every 4,000 to 8,000 miles. However, many models vary in their recommended time frame, so it’s wise to consult your owner’s manual. In general, you’ll want to do this more than once per year, possibly every six months depending on how often you drive and how many miles you accumulate. It will also help keep that pesky TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System) light from blinking on your dashboard. Getting tire rotation and balancing completed at the same time as your alignment is a great idea, and saves a lot of time while keeping your tires in great shape.

Oil changes are a necessity for any vehicle to run properly. Hold off for too long and your engine is ruined. You definitely should change your oil more than once a year. Your owner’s manual will have the best advice for the correct intervals you should adhere to; however, Safford of Warrenton always recommends learning how to check your oil.
Changing seasons can affect your car in a variety of ways. It’s always worth taking the time to periodically check your oil and ensure everything looks perfect. If you’re planning on taking a long road trip with the family or if the last time you changed your oil was last winter or early spring, you should go ahead and change your oil this summer.

It’s never good when the peak of summer comes around and your air conditioner bites the dust. Summer is when this essential aspect of your driving comfort is used the most, but some issues may have developed issues during the months you’re A/C was turned off.
If you notice any issues, weakness or general sluggishness in you’re A/C, it’s definitely worth a look. The belt that drives your car’s air conditioner will most likely be powering other important parts of your vehicle. Ignoring an underperforming A/C could end up in an overheating engine, which might leave you stranded and heated in more ways than one!

If you don’t have a car emergency kit already, now is the time to get one. You never know when it could help you in an unexpectedly bad situation or even save your life. Starting from scratch isn’t so bad: learn more about creating your own vehicle emergency kit. If you already have a kit, here are a few things you might need to check and refresh:
• Check extra brake fluid and engine oil to ensure it’s still in good condition.
• Replace bottled water and any snacks that may seem old or stale.
• Check that flashlight batteries are still in working order.
• Test out any other tools to verify they’re still functioning as needed.

Much like the A/C in summer, the battery is more heavily used in the winter months. Used cars that are on their second or third batteries are definitely something you should keep track of. Summer is the perfect chance to give your battery the annual check-up it deserves.
Ensuring your vehicle’s battery isn’t on the verge of a failure is much better than being surprised by a dead car.

There you have it! This list doesn’t cover absolutely everything you could check on your vehicle this summer, but it does represent the major aspects that affect your car between seasons. If you’re in Warrenton and want to get your vehicle prepped for the hot weather and tuned up for your summer adventures, visit our service center. Our staff are vehicle maintenance experts and ready to assist you, and easy online scheduling makes getting your summer check-up a breeze.

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