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Changing Seasons are Car Care Reminders

See if you can find the pattern here: summertime means vacations and an oil change. Fall means football, an oil change and tire rotation. In the winter it's hot cocoa and (you guessed it) an oil change. Springtime reminds us of April showers, an oil change and tire rotation.

If that exercise prompted you to think about seasonal car maintenance, then you and your car are headed in the right direction. October is the time to winterize your cars as part of a good maintenance plan throughout the year.

During National Car Care Month motorists visited free vehicle check lanes in thirty-five cities throughout the U.S. Thousands of motorists took their cars for review. The results: nearly 9 out of 10 failed some portion of the inspection. A closer look reveals that thirty percent failed due to worn belts and hoses. Nearly one out of three (32%) were found to have low or dirty motor oil. It gets worse. Thirty-five percent failed the exhaust emissions test and 59% had bald or underinflated tires.

These statistics help remind us to change the oil each season and rotate the tires every six months or as recommended in the owner's manual. But preventive maintenance doesn't end there. There's wheel alignment, cooling system, brakes and other systems and components needing periodic attention.

The owner's manual is a good place to start. Some car companies go so far as to break their service recommendations down month by month. Read the owner's manual carefully then keep track of all maintenance.

If you keep good records you won't duplicate any maintenance procedures. And a well-cared-for car, with maintenance records to prove it, is worth a lot more in trade than the same car in average condition.

Courtesy of the Car Care Council