Spring may be in full swing, but summer is quickly coming over the horizon. And with it, we can expect the oh-so-familiar summer heat that seems to get harder and harder to beat. But one thing we need to be mindful of is how that heat can put the hurt on our vehicles. Sure, there’s plenty of maintenance you can do yourself, but we want to make sure you’re checking these specific ones off your summer checkup. Grab a pen, some paper, and prepare to get up to speed with Caliber’s summertime tune up.

As those sweltering temperatures continue to swell, your tires will follow suit. So, first things first, let’s check the tread. It’s simple: when things heat up they expand, and when they get cold they constrict; which, normally, isn’t a big deal for tires. But if you’ve been running the tread a little lean, then the mixture of heat and swelling can cause bubbles to form on the outside of your tires. These little bubbles, when busted, create a big hole in your tire, and potentially an even bigger hole in your wallet to fix any subsequent damages. So, make sure your tread is ready, and if you see any uneven spots, it may be time for a tire rotation.

The next thing you’ll want to check is that your vehicle has plenty of fluids. Check your fluid levels to ensure you aren’t running low on engine oil, power steering fluid, brake fluid or transmission fluid, as it can really do some harm under your hood. And for added precaution, check your coolant and windshield wiper fluid. Your coolant, which prevents engine freeze-ups in the winter, also does wonders in the summer by raising the boiling point and protecting against rust and corrosion year-round. Be sure to check your fluids because, as they always say, the best way to beat the heat is to stay hydrated.

One thing guaranteed to put a halt on your summer fun would be for your A/C to suddenly freeze up. To avoid this, check your compressor to make sure it’s operating properly and blowing cold air powerfully. If the air feels warm, you need to recharge your refrigerant. Thankfully, this task is not too taxing, and can be achieved with a quick trip to your local auto parts store. Because the last thing you want is to feel those outside temps on the inside of your whip.

That’s it! Checking these few simple boxes can help keep you, and your vehicle, out of hot water this summer. And remember: these are all tasks you can tend to yourself before you start throwing money at a mechanic. However, if you ever feel uncomfortable performing any of these tasks, please consult your trusted mechanic. Because, as always, all we want at Caliber to is to keep you safe this summer – on or off the road.