Spring back on the road with these tips and tricks to ensure that your vehicle is ready for spring. You’d be surprised at the things we miss that can end up costing us in the end.

  1. Replace Wiper Blades and Fluid: It is recommended to change your blades each spring and fall to ensure they’re in great wiping condition. There’s nothing worse (and dangerous) than not being able to see out of your windshield.
  2. Check Tires and Tire Pressure: Cold weather can often cause tires to be underinflated, due to the molecules shrinking from the cold air, and then overinflating when it warms back up. A tire blowout can cost anywhere from $50 to $250 to replace, depending on the tire that your vehicles requires. Well-maintained tires provide protection against avoidable breakdowns and crashes, improved vehicle handling, better fuel economy, and increased tire life. Keeping tire pressure at the manufacturers recommended level increases fuel efficiency by one mile per gallon of gas — something that’s even more important in the spring when gas prices tend to rise.

Quick Tip: To check if your tires need to be replaced, insert a quarter into the tire’s tread, with Washington’s head toward the tire. If no portion of his head is   covered, the tread is below 1/8 of an inch and you should consider replacing your tires.

  1. Top off Fluids: Fluid levels are a big part of car maintenance. Check your oil, brake fluid and transmission fluid every 5,000 miles or so to make sure that your vehicle is running its best.
  2. Check your spare tire and emergency kit: Every vehicle should have a spare tire and the tools to change a tire – and it’s a good idea to take a quick look to make sure everything is on board. It’s also smart to keep a first aid kit, flash light with batteries, and bottled water in case you find yourself or another motorist in an emergency situation.
  3. Check your brakes: The salty air in the south can impact the condition of your brakes. Salt corrodes the metal and your brake pads rely on clean, lubricated metal frames to work properly (and not squeal). Maintaining your brake pads can help prolong the life of your brakes, saving you money.
  4. Lights and Bulbs: Inspect all lights and bulbs and replace any that are burned out. This is especially important for driving in spring rain.
  5. Tightness and condition of belts, clamps and hoses: This is something a qualified auto technician should check for you.

Want to better protect your vehicle? Pen Air offers warranty coverage through Route 66 Extended Warranty, so you can feel better about unexpected repairs or maintenance down the road. Route 66 is the most comprehensive extended warranty coverage for all makes and models to give you peace of mind when you need it most. Some of the features include a zero dollar deductible, 24/7 roadside service, along with a total loss refund. Ask a Member Advisor how to add extended warranty coverage to any of your vehicles today by calling 850.505.3200 or stop by any Pen Air location.

You can learn more about spring auto tips from Automotive Service Excellence.