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ON THE ROAD: Get Your Truck Ready for Summer Driving

Summer brings heat and additional stress on your truck’s engine.

We’re approaching the hottest days of the year, and that requires a little preparation to ensure your truck is ready to keep up with your industry’s demands. We’ve broken out the most important things you can do to get ready for the summer season below.

Switch out winter gear.

There’s no longer a need for tire chains, so remove them from your truck and save 100 pounds or more in the process. It’s also a good time to do a thorough cleaning. Road salt stuck under your truck paired with summer heat is a recipe for accelerated rust and corrosion.

Check your tires and brakes.

Have you switched to summer or all-season tires yet? Don’t use winter tires during the hot season because it will reduce your fuel economy. Once you’ve put on the right tires, make sure the tire pressure is set to the manufacturer’s recommendation. Temperature and load weight have a major impact on tire pressure, so make sure to check tire pressure at least weekly. Also, it’s a good idea to get your tires rotated and balanced if it’s been a while to reduce uneven wear.

Your truck’s brakes are critical, so ask your mechanic to check pads, lining, and rotors before heading out into the busy summer season.

Inspect your battery.

Extreme heat can accelerate battery degradation. Ask your mechanic to perform a thorough inspection to find low voltage or other issues in the battery. Also check for corrosion on the battery and its connections, and make sure everything is well secured.

Change your oil and coolant.

Engine oil provides the necessary lubrication for critical moving parts in your engine, so this is not something you want to forget as you head into summer with the additional engine stress of increased operating temperatures. Make sure to change the oil per the manufacturer’s recommended schedule. Delaying fresh oil will speed up wear and tear.

Engine overheating is common during the warm months, so reduce your risk by inspecting your coolant system and flushing as necessary. Check your coolant level and condition and the condition of drive belts, hoses, and clamps. Perform a coolant flush if its condition is suspect, or if you expect to reach to the maintenance interval during the busy summer season.

“Truck drivers, like truck engines, get cranky when they are too hot.”

Make sure your cabin is cool.

Truck drivers, like truck engines, get cranky when they are too hot, so make sure you check your air conditioning is blowing cold. Also, inspect the rubber weather stripping around your doors and windows. If it is dry and cracked, it’s not insulating your cabin well and time to replace. You can also add clear UV-blocking film to your windows to reduce the amount of sunlight heat getting in your cabin.

Regardless of your truck or route, the summer season stresses your operations. The key to minimizing vehicle downtime is prevention. Count on Source One Parts Center for your critical parts to make sure your truck runs optimally no matter the season.