Fall is already here in Colorado Springs and another cold winter is just around the corner. It's a good time to make sure your car is in the best possible shape for safety and performance throughout the colder and wetter months.
Cooling System Maintenance
One system that is very important in the winter is your vehicle's cooling system. "Cooling system" is sometimes a misleading term. Yes, this is the system that keeps your engine from overheating. However, it is also vital in helping keep the engine and other components from seizing up when the temperatures outside are cold. You might even think of it as a temperature regulation system for the engine. Ultimately, it performs very important functions in all seasons.
Here are a few tips from Colorado Springs' own LightHouse Automotive to get—and keep—your cooling system working well throughout the winter months:
1. Watch Out for Coolant Leaks
Leaks of radiator fluid (aka coolant or antifreeze) can be common. The fluid is typically bright yellow/green in color and easy to identify underneath the vehicle. If you notice a fluid leak of any kind, it's worth getting looked at by a professional mechanic before it develops into a major automotive problem.
2. Make Sure Your Radiator is Filled at the Proper Coolant Level
Like all vehicle fluids, coolant should be maintained at a proper fill level within the radiator. Wait until the vehicle is completely cooled down before opening the radiator cap. If the fluid level looks low or the fluid itself is corroded or dark (or has a sweet burnt smell), you'll want to get it taken care of sooner rather than later.
3. Use the Proper Coolant-to-Water Mixture
Many radiator coolants will come pre-mixed with water, but sometimes in the winter you may want slightly different ratios of coolant-to-water for better performance. When it's freezing outside, the right mix will help keep the engine from seizing up.
4. Take Care of the Belts, Seals and Hoses
Various belts, seals and hoses connect and operate the different components of your cooling system. The warmer summer months can dry out these rubber and plastic parts and then the colder/wetter weather will quickly expose any weaknesses. Make sure these parts are taken care of an get them replaced as needed.
5. Get a Professional Cooling System Inspection and Winterization
In general, this is the ideal time of year to get a proper cooling system inspection from a professional auto shop like LightHouse Automotive. We can inspect all the components, refill or flush the coolant as needed (with the proper water mixture) and get your cooling system fully "winterized" before the coldest months hit and put your vehicle to the ultimate test.
To schedule a cooling system inspection and winterization at LightHouse Automotive, stop by our shop at 2499 East Platte Avenue, call (719) 465-0302 or schedule your service appointment online. Don't wait until it's too late!