Car Care: Spring Maintenance Check List Part 1

checking_car_batteryCar Care: Spring Maintenance Check List – Part 1

The following except is from the article, “Car Care: Spring Maintenance Check List.” For more information please visit cbsnews.com.

After what seemed like an endless winter, you may be planning to hit the road for a spring or summer road trip.

Just take this factoid as a warning: AAA roadside service estimates that it helps more than 9 million stranded motorists during a summer.

If, like most Americans, you’re not driving a fresh-from-the-showroom ride – the average age of passenger vehicles in the U.S. is just over 10 years old – it’s time to give your car a little springtime TLC.

“Drivers often overlook their cars when it is spring cleaning time,” says Shawn Hoelzer, master technician for CarMax, the largest U.S. chain of used car dealerships. “Following a few easy steps to spruce up your vehicle helps avoid costly repairs.”

So take your car to a dealership to get checked out – or, better yet, to an independent mechanic you trust. Use this spring maintenance checklist to make sure your car is reliable and running efficiently.

Check the battery: You can’t get where you are going if the car won’t start. “Winter is tough on all the starting components like the starter and alternator. The battery works harder and can get drained,” says Jimmie Swims, a specialist at the auto parts chain Auto Zone. Signs of a weak battery: dimming headlights or interior lights; power windows that take longer than usual to go up and down.