Summertime… the days get longer and the mercury begins to rise. It’s a great time for families; not so much for your car. Because nothing puts more strain on your car’s engine and drivetrain than high temperatures. Add the air conditioning to the mix, and you have a recipe for an underhood disaster.

Prevent Car Overheating

How can you protect your car from today’s extreme temperatures and prevent car ac problems? There are a few things you can do. To begin with, use a good quality engine oil; one that’s a little heavier than your winter blend. That engine oil provides extra lubrication to reduce the heat generated by friction between moving parts.

Next, take your car to your local Cottman center to have your car’s cooling system checked, both for condition and function. Their technicians will check for leaks, and make sure the coolant is in good shape and the system is full.

They’ll check the hoses and belts, and make sure the radiator cap is holding pressure properly. That radiator cap increases boiling temperatures by about 3ºF (about 1.7ºC) for every pound of pressure it applies to the system. So a cap that holds 15 PSI will increase boiling temperatures by about 45ºF (25ºC).

They’ll also check the cooling fan. If it’s an electric fan, they’ll make sure it’s coming on at the right time. And they’ll check all cooling fans to make sure they’re moving enough air to keep the system cool.

Vehicle Air Conditioning Service

When you bring your car in to your local Cottman, let them know about your driving characteristics: Is it mostly city driving or do you spend a lot of time on the highway? And do you tend to have a full load in your car or do any towing?

The technician will use that to determine whether you should consider installing a transmission cooler. That’s important, because nothing damages a transmission faster than high temperatures. An add-on cooler is a really inexpensive way to add miles to your transmission’s life.

Sure, summer’s great… for you. Not so much for your car. So stop car ac problems before they happen, and get your vehicle checked thoroughly at your nearby Cottman center!