Car maintenance: What to do before summer
For many Aussies, summer means more time on the road — there are people to see and road trips to take! But before you set off, make sure your car maintenance is sorted.
Check your brakes
Extreme weather can put a lot of stress on your brakes, so it’s good to inspect them before it arrives.
Where to start
If you notice pulsations, or strange noises like squeals, screeches or a deep metallic grinding — it’s time to call a pro.
Even if your brakes aren’t giving you trouble, get them inspected regularly. Use your car’s manual as a guide for specific timings.
Make sure your insurance is up to date
Before you head off on that summer adventure, make sure you’ve packed some peace of mind. AAMI Comprehensive Car Insurance covers accidental damage — both to other people’s cars and property, and your own.
We’ll get you back on the road ASAP after an insured incident. And if you aren’t at fault, we’ll cover the cost of a hire car while your ride is being assessed and repaired — provided you can quote the details of the at-fault driver. A damaged car doesn’t have to stall your summer plans!
If you’re looking for a more affordable, less extensive level of cover, check out our Third Party Car Insurance. It’s a solid, no frills option with a legal liability of up to $20 mil. You’ll be covered for damage to other people’s cars and property, but not your own.
Give your tyres some TLC
Check tread depth
Tread depth is the depth of the grooves running vertically across each tyre. Replace your tyres when their tread depths drop below 3mm.
Not sure how to check? Read our tyre maintenance guide.
Check your wiper blades
A dirty windshield causes eye strain and is a potential safety hazard, particularly in summer when there are more bugs in the air.
Where to start
Use a streak-free windshield washer fluid that targets bugs and tar. Replace worn out wiper blades before hitting the road.
Test your battery
A full battery should read 12.7v or above with the engine switched off. Any less and you may have difficulty starting your car.
When in doubt, don’t hesitate to ask a pro for help.
Test your AC
Remember, a poorly maintained AC system is more likely to fail in hot weather.
Where to start
Run your AC and see if it still blows cold. Check for strange noises and odours.
Check the radiator fluid
Look at the coolant in the reservoir. Handy tip: it’s usually bright yellow or greenish. Be careful when opening the cap if your car’s engine is still warm. The coolant should look clear, not cloudy. If you notice a strong burnt smell, you may need to get it flushed professionally.
Avoid handling aircon coolant unless you know what you’re doing — it can be dangerous! It might be best to leave this one to the pros.
Inspect your lights and bulbs
Regularly clean dirt and insects from the lenses of your car headlights, using a dry rag to prevent scratches. Replace burned out bulbs. Now you’re all set for some warm, summer night cruising!
If you’re planning a road trip…
Get your car serviced before heading out for a long drive.
- How to be ready for anything on your next road trip
- Car maintenance and servicing 101 — A beginner’s guide
- 5 questions to ask before buying car insurance
Insurance is issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 AFSL 230859 (AAI) trading as AAMI. Any advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situation or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it. Please read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement before you make any decision regarding this product. The Target Market Determination is also available.