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Vehicle maintenance should be in order as summer travel and family vacations come to an end. Fortunately, October is coming up, which is an important month for car care!

Why October for Car Care?

October is one of two months during the year that consumers are encouraged to administer some extra tender loving care for their cars. This allows drivers to help their vehicles recover from the wear and tear of summer travel as well as prepare for the harsh winter months ahead. Appropriate vehicle maintenance requires extra effort for the car owner in partnership with professional mechanics and should be completed at least once a year.

The Cost of Neglecting Your Vehicle

Vehicle maintenance might seem insignificant in the least and, at the most, annoying. Why care for your car on a regular basis?   Simply put, neglecting vehicle maintenance in the short-term will only lead to greater inconvenience, stress, and cost in the long-term. There are parts on cars that require consistent care and replacement that, in context, cost very little when completed regularly.

Vehicle Maintence in Ten Steps

Fortunately, these ten steps can help you maintain your car’s health as the harsh winter months loom ahead.

  • See Clearly – Check your windshield and wipers to make sure there are no dings that need to be corrected and that the wipers will hold up well as autumn rains begin.
  • Light Your Way – Check all lights to make sure they’re working, including brake lights, signals, and headlights.
  • Stop in Time – Review the brake system, including rotors, drums, and brake pads that may be in need of replacement.
  • Power Up – Take a look at the battery and do some cleaning, replacing it if necessary.
  • Hydrate the Car – Your car needs adequate hydration, just as you do. Check and fill or replace all fluids, including windshield washer fluid, coolant, oil, power steering, transmission and brake fluids.
  • Belts and Hoses – Inspect all belts and hoses to make sure they aren’t loose, cracked, brittle or needing replacement.
  • Stay Cool…Or Warm – Depending on the season, you need the heating, cooling and ventilation system to work well for both comfort and convenience.
  • On the Straight and Narrow – Check tires for any uneven wear, bulges and tread. If the tread has worn unevenly, it could mean that your car requires an alignment.
  • Under Pressure – While checking out the tires, take some time to inflate the tires as needed so that the car is operating most efficiently for the best gas mileage.
  • Schedule a Tune-Up – While many tasks for good vehicle maintenance can be done on your own, it’s important to schedule regular tune-ups with a professional to keep your vehicle running at optimum efficiency.