Driving around in the middle of the summer heat is not easy or comfortable, especially if your car does not have a properly functioning air conditioning system.
The hot and humid weather can cause fatigue, dizziness and may even lead to heatstroke. Heat can also make you restless, which can be a danger if you are driving. Too much heat is also not good for your car as it can damage the battery, dry out the tires, or lead to overheating.
If you plan to go out and drive in the summer season, you can avoid getting into any of the situations mentioned above by taking care of your car’s air conditioning system. You’ve probably thought of having your engine checked, the interiors cleaned, and maybe even had car audio installation, but the AC is just as important as all these.
Proper maintenance of your vehicle’s air conditioning system can help prevent the need for repairs, especially repetitive ones. A well-maintained AC is also energy efficient, so you’ll save on expenses as well. Additionally, regularly maintained ACs are more durable and long-lasting.
If you want to make the best of your summer adventures, you should start taking care of your car’s AC system as if it was your baby. If you do not know where or how to start, here are some tips to follow.
Check your Car’s AC Regularly
Checking the general condition of your car’s AC should be done regularly, not just when the summer season is about to start. Your AC works hard to keep you comfortable while on the road, especially if you use your car every day. It’s bound to give up any time if you ignore it.
You don’t have to get your AC serviced by a specialist every month or after every use. You can do the checking yourself. There are a lot of tips that you’ll find online or YouTube.
You do need to have the AC system professionally cleaned at least once a year, though. Getting a professional to check and tune-up your car’s air conditioning is vital for ensuring that all the necessary parts are taken care of and the proper process is followed.
Don’t Wait for your Car’s Air Conditioning to Reach the Breaking Point
If you notice something wrong with your car’s AC, you have to address the problem right away. Waiting until the last minute will lead to more problems and eventually damage the system. Even if only one part or piece of your AC is damaged, it will affect the rest of the components of the system.
Know What to look out for
There are times when you’re on the road, and your AC suddenly breaks down. Such situations leave you with no other choice but to take care of the problem yourself, especially when you are in the middle of nowhere. It would help if you had at least a basic idea of what to do and how to ensure that your car’s air conditioning is working well and in good condition.
Here are some pointers to consider:
- The air filter is important because it affects the performance of your AC. If you don’t clean it at all, it won’t give you the kind of cool you need. Your AC won’t perform as expected. The air filter is easy to find –open the glove box and reach out behind it, and that’s where it is. Get it out and find its encasement as well. Shake off all the dust and dirt from the encasement and clean the filter with water. You should also consider replacing the air filter, especially if it has been in use for months.
- Try to find the compressor and check for any leaks or cracks in the hoses. It won’t be easy to fix this on your own, so you’ll need to call your car AC specialist to help you with this. If you’re on the road, maybe he or she can give you a step-by-step walkthrough of what to do. If this is not possible, then you need to bring your car to the nearest repair shop the soonest that you can.
- Your vehicle’s AC’s Freon is also vital for optimum performance, so you need to have it checked and replaced regularly. It is a refrigerant, so if you leave it unattended, it won’t be effective in cooling your car. You can actually change the Freon by yourself, but you’ll need a guide if you want to do it properly.
- Your car windshield (or rather under it) is where you’ll find the AC’s exterior grills. Clear away anything you find there—leaves and any dirt or debris. If you leave them there, all the dirt will get into your AC system, clogging it and making it ineffective and inefficient.
- If you do not use your car regularly and keep it in the garage, find time to run the AC once a week. Be sure to set it really cold for at least ten minutes. Do this the whole year if you want your AC’s compressor to work well and the gas pressure to be efficient.
Your Car Interior has to be Clean as Well
It’s not just your car’s AC that you need to take care of; you also need to clean your vehicle’s interiors as often as you can. Use a vacuum cleaner to clean all the dust, dirt, seats, mats, and carpeting. Keeping everything tidy and clean will prevent unwanted particles from clogging your car’s air conditioning.
Keeping your vehicle’s AC well-maintained is the ideal way to prepare for the hot summer months. It’s the best thing you can do to ensure that your system works efficiently for years. The tips mentioned above will help point you to the right path to taking care of your car’s air conditioning system.
Lauren Bricks is the Content Specialist for Streetfighter Motorsports LLC, a family-operated car audio and accessory installation, sales, and customization facility located in Phoenix, Arizona. She loves cars, and although she spends much of her week writing about them, she still finds the time to hop onto the second-hand Corvette convertible her dad gave her for her 25th birthday and drive to the countryside with the top down.