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Top 5 car checks before you head out on the road this summer

Summer is just around the corner and if you’re like a lot of other people at this time of year, chances are you’re busy planning a summer road trip. You have your route planned, your accommodation booked, but what about your car?  

While you can’t prevent sudden highway detours or hotels that don’t appear like they do online, you can protect yourself from breakdowns and sudden malfunctions by taking your car to your local mechanic and asking them to give your car a good summer service before you hit the road.

Your mechanic will check your car’s mechanical and safety systems and ensure you and your family are ready to roll, saving you from any unfortunate surprises. Here are a few car checks to ensure they include…


1. Braking System: make sure you can stop when you want to!


Brakes that function properly are even more important when you are carrying a higher load. Luggage and kids significantly add to your weight!

A complete braking system check includes inspection of your brake pads, brake fluid and brake discs. Brake checks are recommended every 15,000 or 20,000 kilometres, or immediately if your car is showing any sign of vibration or noise during braking. For peace of mind, and to ensure you can make all the stops you need to this summer, ask your mechanic to include a thorough brake check in your summer service. 




2. In the blazing sun... how do you keep your engine in top shape?


Your engine filtration system is your first line of defence against mechanical breakdown this summer holidays. This includes your air, oil and fuel filters.

Fuel filters stop particles and water from damaging your engine. Oil filters extract damaging particles created in the lubrication flow (metal particles, combustion particles and dust), and also help reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. Air filters prevent particles from the outside air entering the engine, and they also reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. All three are key to ensuring the best performance and durability of your engine this summer.




3. Air Conditioning: help everyone keep cool, and safe! 


One of the most essential elements of any summer road trip to have right is our beloved air conditioner. A fully-functioning air conditioner can be the difference between an easy, fun drive and an arduous, never-ending journey! 

A fully-functioning air conditioning system means more than just being able to set your air conditioner at the perfect temperature for you and your passengers. A thorough check will ensure humidity can be controlled and that air filters are working properly. Air filters prevent pollution and allergens from outside the car entering the cabin. In conjunction with an antibacterial treatment like Valeo ClimPur™, good quality air filters ensure you and your passengers are breathing clean, filtered air. 

Perhaps most importantly, a functioning air conditioner means a cool, calm driver and a cool, calm driver is a safer driver. If the temperature is just right and you are breathing clean air, there is no need to rush or make rash decisions. Which makes the road safer for everyone.

To ensure proper functioning of your air conditioner, it is recommended that it is recharged by an air conditioning specialist using a quality refill station like Valeo ClimFill® every two years. 



4. Cooling and Air Management Systems: you and your car deserve a smooth ride


While your air conditioning system keeps you and your family cool on those summer drives, your car’s cooling and air management systems keep your car running smoothly and extend the life and ongoing efficiency of your engine.

These systems include elements such as the radiator, water pump, thermostats, cooling fan, coolant, intercooler, water temperature sensors, thermoswitches and the Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) valve. Ensuring all these elements are performing properly is key to protecting your engine against overheating, damage and the inconvenience of roadside breakdowns. 

Ask your mechanic to include these elements in your service and you’ll be assured a smooth ride this summer!  




5. Wiper blades: see clearly, even in a torrential downpour!


Getting caught in a torrential summer storm while you’re driving can be shocking and stressful. It can be made even worse if you have trouble seeing through your windshield. Make sure you always have a clear view of the road this summer with a wiper blade check.

Wiper blades should be replaced every year and checked at least every six months. While you’re on the road, periodically cleaning your wipers with a damp cloth will help them to continue to function properly. When replacing your wipers, to ensure peace of mind, ask for premium wiper blades: Valeo Silencio.  



Here’s to a stress-free and safe summer road trip! 


You can’t prevent all of the sudden and unexpected inconveniences when you go on holidays, but by including all of the above checks in your summer service you can go a long way to ensuring you and your family have a safe and stress-free time on the road this summer.

As always, your mechanic is the best person to advise whether your car is ready for the trip you have planned, and whether any parts need replacing. If you do need replacement parts, ensure you have the best quality replacement parts by asking for Valeo parts, the aftermarket specialist. You can then rest assured your car will perform exactly as it should.

And if you’ve made these 5 key checks, you’re ready to hit the road! Let’s go! Have a great summer!