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Transition from winter wear with spring car care

Your vehicle needs some special TLC after the beating it’s taken from road salt, grit, snow, ice, cold temperatures, freezing rain – well, you know what we’re talking about, because you’ve been living with it since late last year. So follow these top-to-toe tips for a healthier vehicle as you head into the warmer months.

Engine Take the first day of spring to schedule your next oil change. While you’re at it, have your battery and connections checked, replace your air filter, check radiator and gas caps for deterioration, and see if it’s time for the recommended 2-year cooling system flush and fill.

Exterior Ideally, you’ve been taking advantage of those milder days to wash off the road salt throughout the winter months. If not, get thee to a car wash for a thorough bath as soon as you can to protect the finish and the undercarriage from corrosive salt and grit. Make sure your wiper blades are still doing the job after a winter of wiping away dirt, debris, salt and gravel spray, and replace them if they aren’t so you’re ready for those April showers and June bugs.

Tires Is it time to rotate your tires? This should be done every 5,000 to 10,000 miles to extend the life of your tires by significantly reducing wear. Even if you aren’t rotating them, check the pressure, which can change when outside temps rise or fall.

Interior Take inventory of your trunk, front and back seat areas and any storage spots including your glove box. Remove the useless junk and trash that seems to accumulate when freezing temperatures provide an excuse to skip cleaning out the car. Take a damp cloth and wipe down the dash, cup holders and other places that seem to attract dirt and spills. And take a half hour to wash the windows so you can see the beautiful springtime that is unfolding around you as you travel the highways and byways.