The Global Heatwave: What it means for your car

As you may have realised, the Sun is currently the second hottest thing in our galaxy. The first is probably your gear knob that you touched accidentally without realising how hot it was, when it’s been baking in the heat.

Like us, you’ve probably been desperately searching for cheap air-conditioning units, sitting with your nose three millimetres from the fan, and generally trying to find a way to remove your clothing without people realising. The current heatwave that has swept pretty much the entire globe, (that’s right, it’s not just Britain), has been causing a lot of distress and devastation to people, animals and the planet in general. We could touch upon several topics of issues like wildfires, etc. but we’ll keep it topical for the moment. 

So, first things’ first. What effect is this heat having on your car? Well, good news first, at least you can tell whether the Air Con is working. Now for the bad news, and there’s lots of it we’re afraid. 

Coolant:

Would you, as a human being, run around for between thirty minutes and four hours straight, without hydrating yourself? No! Well, some of you might, but you’d probably be feeling a tad parched by the end. Likewise, your engine will die without coolant. In temperatures such as we’re seeing, your car simply won’t put up with it for long. Make sure it’s topped up! And keep an eye out for coolant leaks. Oh, and make sure it’s the correct grade of coolant!

Oil:

Imagine for a second your cartilage and fluid around your bones disappears; what happens? You often need surgery to repair the damage that two mighty dry objects have done to one another. In your engine, exactly the same thing happens. Lots of moving, metal objects, scraping and rubbing one another. With lubricant? Brilliant, all working as man intended. Without lubricant? Crash, bang, wallop. Ejecto engine! Keeping your oil in check in this weather will mean a cleaner, healthier engine and far better performance. Your engine is running at maximum in these sorts of temperatures, so make sure that your regular oil changes are done. Maybe even make them more frequent. Less expensive than a new engine, right? Again, do please check with your local dealer as to which oil is correct for your engine.

Tyres:

We deal with quite a few tyre enquiries, as you might imagine. At present we’ve seen an influx of cracking in our customers’ tyres, due to the higher road temperatures and lack of any real moisture on the road (see oil metaphor). In particular low tyre pressures allow more flexibility in the tyre surface and tyre wall, and as such, the heat forces cracks and abrasions in them. So our advice is to check your tyre pressures, and monitor them for heavier cracking. If need be, get them checked! Likewise, this can also affect your cars’ rubber seals, perishing them through cracks as well – so keep an eye on them too. 

Paintwork: 

It’s not really a secret that UV rays damage human skin, is it? But it often gets overlooked that it also has a pretty catastrophic affect on your cars’ paintwork in this sort of constant sun. Now, paint is paint, and nothing much will stop the elements from causing fade; but here’s a few tips to help. Remove that bird poo ASAP. Because once it’s baked on, that’s it, those marks rarely come out without a respray. Make sure to wash it and generally try to dry it by hand. It’s much better for the paint, and the oils produced by a real chamois leather can really benefit your paintwork. Equally, a very good wax will immeasurably help it.

Well, that’s it folks. No more top tips from us. Once you’ve carried out all of these checks, washed and waxed your car, replaced the tyres, and filled up your lubricant, it will likely be time for bed… Goodnight!