Fall Automotive Care Checklist for Oklahoma Drivers

September 15th, 2020 by

windshield wiper blades

Prepare Your Ford Truck or SUV for the Changing Seasons

Preparing your Ford truck or SUV for the unpredictable weather of the fall and winter months doesn’t have to be a big deal. Let our experts at Zeck Ford in Purcell, Oklahoma help you at our on-site service center.

Zeck Ford professionals are here to help you feel safe in your vehicle, and their service extends past the buying experience. The Ford technicians on site are equipped with the skills, experience, and equipment to handle all of your maintenance and repair needs. The service center is also stocked with authentic Ford parts for your special vehicle.

As the fall and winter months approach, it’s time to ready your Ford truck or SUV for anything the weather will throw at you. If you don’t drive a Ford vehicle, no need to fret; the friendly and dedicated service professionals at Zeck Ford service center help maintain your vehicle, no matter what model you’re driving.

Tires & Tire Rotations at a Car Dealership Service Center

Your vehicle’s tire life is important in the coming colder months when the driving conditions may not be as comfortable as you’d like. It’s crucial to know when to change your tires, when to rotate them, and what to look for when you may need to replace them. It’s important to inspect your tires every month to gauge the wear and to know when it’s time for tire maintenance.

The tire tread on your vehicle should wear evenly across the whole tire. The tire’s tread depth is measured in 32nds of an inch. New tires have from 9/32” to 11/32” of tread material. A tire is considered unsafe when the tread is worn down to 2/32”. The easiest way to test this is to grab a penny (yes, a penny), and insert the penny into the gap in the tread, with Lincoln’s head pointing down (towards the tread). You should measure via one of the most-used areas of your tire, about halfway between the outside of the tire and the centerline of the tread. If you can see all of Lincoln’s head, the tire is due to be replaced.

Other signs that your tires need to be replaced, outside of tread wear, are bubbles and bulges, vibration in your steering wheel, sidewall cuts or cracks, embedded nails or stones, damaged valve caps, and any other obvious visible damage.

In regards to tire rotations, you should get your tires rotated every 5,000 to 7,000 miles. The reason to rotate your tires is to ensure that your tires wear evenly and to extend the life of your tire, saving you money in the long run.

Refilling Fluids at a Ford Service Center

Obviously refilling your vehicle’s fluids is something that needs to be done on a regular basis for vehicle maintenance and to extend the life of your vehicle. This is especially important for upcoming winter months to prevent any car troubles during winter driving. As the temperature drops, the fluids in your vehicle begin to thicken and even gel. If oil, antifreeze, or washer fluid aren’t kept at the proper viscosity, they can do serious damage to the seals and systems inside your car, making a pricey repair necessary later.

Keeping a jug of your vehicle’s preferred oil on hand is helpful in maintaining liquid levels in between oil changes. Make sure you check your vehicle’s owner’s manual for the type of oil you need for your specific model and make.

Another helpful thing to keep in your car so you don’t get low is antifreeze. The owner’s manual will also help with figuring out what antifreeze is right for your car. Failing to swap out antifreeze or not refilling it can cause the fluid to freeze in your radiator.

Washer fluid, too, is one of the most frequently forgotten aspects of winter car prep. Swapping out your “summer” washer fluid for a winter-grade blend is helpful. Summer washer fluid tends to freeze in colder temperatures, which, in turn, damages the wiper blades and turns the windshield into a sheet of ice.

Get Regular Oil Changes and Change Oil Filters

Switching up your oil for the colder months is very important to your vehicle’s overall health. Oil that is made for winter months has the correct viscosity that helps keep your car running smoothly.

The proper “winter” oil for your specific vehicle can be found in your owner’s manual. The thickness of your oil changes with the temperature; lower temperatures mean thicker motor oil and thicker motor oil means greater pressure on the oil filter. Experts recommend changing your oil between 3,000 and 7,500 miles, depending on your vehicle make and model and also what type of oil you’re using. Keeping up with your oil changes and changing your oil filter will help extend your vehicle’s life.

Replacing Windshield Wipers and Blades on Your Ford Vehicle

Making sure you have good windshield wipers and blades is important for driving during less-than-desirable conditions. When parking your car overnight or when the weather is bad outside, taking preventative measures will extend the life of your windshield wiper blades. When you park, pull your wiper blades up and away from your windshield, so they are in the air, and cover them up so you don’t have to break ice off of them. Making sure to clean your windshield wiper blades off, to remove sand and salt will also extend the life of the blades.

You also should never operate your wiper blades in an effort to remove sheets of ice on your windshield; this can damage the rubber part of the blade and require you to replace them again.

Extending Your Car’s Battery Life

Cold temperatures can affect your vehicle’s battery life. Most car batteries only last between two and five years, anyway. Checking the age of your battery and inspecting the battery cables, hold-down brackets, and trays will help. If you see signs of erosion on any of these parts, it’s probably time to change out your battery.

Get Your Vehicle Serviced in Purcell, Oklahoma

Scheduling service is important to your vehicle’s upkeep and to maintain a long-lasting life for your truck or SUV. Zeck Ford makes this easy on their website with a simple form that you fill out to request an appointment.

Once a Zeck Ford team member receives it, a service technician will contact you within 48 hours, and your appointment will be set. It’s really that easy to help keep your vehicle in great condition.

Stay safe during all seasons with Zeck Ford and their professional Ford service technicians, on-site at our Ford dealership in Purcell, Oklahoma, near Oklahoma City and Norman.

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