Extreme heat and vehicles simply don’t mix. Summer weather can cause a lot of vehicle breakdowns that can leave you stranded on the road. Engine surge, blown tires, overheating, and dead batteries are some of the issues that can easily disable your vehicle.
The following are 5 types of vehicle breakdowns that happen most during the summer:
Low fluid level or a faulty cooling system are some of the most common reasons vehicles overheat. During the summer season, your car’s cooling system has to work harder in order to prevent engine overheating. To prevent your vehicle breakdown due to overheating, it is recommended that you check your vehicle’s fluids, such as engine oil, washer fluid, automatic transmission fluid, brake fluid, and engine coolant regularly.
2. Engine Surge
This issue can occur due to a number of problems, e.g. a dirty air filter, which may cause drivability problem or even vehicle breakdown. In summer months, vehicles are prone to issues with exhaust gas recirculation that send a part of the exhaust back through the engine in order to reduce emissions. This flow can cause blockages and vehicle breakdown by building up in your intake manifold. If not fixed, it could lead to very costly repairs.
3. Evaporative Leak
The increasing temperature in summer months can cause increased pressure in your gas tank. This pressure must be vented in order to prevent the gas tank from deforming. The emissions caused by fuel volatility are vented into a charcoal canister on the car, which absorbs and stores the fuel vapor until you start the engine and the vapors can be purged. The ‘check engine’ light must turn on if such a leak is detected. If your car is older, then there is a possibility of a cracked hose, which is basically a fuel leak.
4. No Start
Vehicle batteries seldom signal failure beforehand and they often die at the most inconvenient time, e.g. during travel. For your battery, the summer season presents the worst conditions. Fortunately, you can prevent most battery issues by following some simple tips. It is recommended that you make sure that your car has all of the plastic pieces surrounding the battery. These are designed to keep the vehicle’s battery cool and divert air across it to extend its life. The main purpose of the battery is to start the car. A failed battery will cause the generator/alternator to work harder in order to charge and can lead to generator failure if not cared for quickly. So, you should take care of the battery issues when it’s just the battery.
5. Flat Tire/Blowout
Flat tires are one of the most common causes of road trip delays. These are often caused by over inflation and wear and tear in summer season. While newer cars have monitoring systems in place for checking tire pressure, the older cars don’t have the system to detect this issue. Fortunately, most service stations have a gauge on the air pump so you can check the tire pressure there to prevent over inflation. You should also refer to your owner’s manual for the proper tire inflation levels.
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