Spring Car Maintenance Best Practices
Winter slowly but surely is leaving us here in Ontario. Icy roads, adverse weather conditions, freezing temperatures… your car works harder during the colder months. With warmer temps just around the corner, as well as, for many, more road travel and car trips, spring is an important time to take care of your vehicle and give it a little TLC. Help it shake off those winter cobwebs (or should we say icicles) and get ready to say hello to the spring!
Car maintenance best practices for the spring
Check your oil and filter. Generally it is recommend to do an oil change 2-3 times a year or every 5,000 -7,500 km, although some suggest that every 12,000 km is enough. There is a lot of debate on this topic. Newer vehicles tend to last longer between oil changes and many even have build in monitoring systems. Your car’s owner’s manual will have the specific recommendations for your vehicle. Stick with what’s recommended for your car.
Check your wiper blades. How did they fare during winter’s beating? If they got trashed or just don’t work as well any more, time for replacement.
Check the battery. Cold temperatures can be particularly hard on car batteries. Test your battery, make sure its connections are clean (including no corrosion) and tight. Has it been 5 years since you last bought a battery? It’s probably time for a replacement.
Check your fluids (power steering, transmission, brakes, coolant, windshield wiper) as well as your filters (cabin, engine air, fuel). It’s a good idea to be regularly checking these fluids and filters and doing so now in the Spring after the wear and tear of winter is a good idea.
Check hoses and belts. Did you know that rubber is sensitive to colder temperature and can harden or otherwise be damaged (think fraying, cracking or blistering for example) when it’s chilly out?
Check your tires. Keeping them at the proper pressure is important for your safety out on the road. Replace those that are worn out or damaged and get a rotation done if it’s been 10,000 km since your last one. Did you switch to winter tires to take advantage of the special car insurance discount in Ontario? When you should take them off depends on the weather and the temperature. Usually in Ontario you’ll be looking at around mid-April, when the temps are consistently around 7C. The Toronto Star in a recent article recommends waiting until at least Apr 15th, with a friendly reminder that snow in April is common in our province.
We’ve got car maintenance tips for you all year long! Check out our seasonal posts from the archives…
You can also find more handy tips and recommendations for all the seasons over on the Be Car Aware site.
Disclosure: This information is intended for educational purposes only and is not meant to replace the advice or expertise of a certified auto mechanic or qualified technician.
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