San Antonians are no strangers to extreme Texas heat. But do you know how to drive safely when it’s too hot outside for your car to perform at its best? Below, the attorneys of Ketterman Rowland & Westlund discuss how extreme heat and weather can affect your car’s performance and what you can do to stay safe this summer.
The following tips can help you stay cool and safe even in Texas’ most extreme hot weather:
Keep your cooling system in good shape
Your cooling system undergoes additional strain during the summer, which can cause your engine to overheat. Check your owner’s manual to determine how often you should check or service the belts, hoses, and connections in your system.
Avoid excessively hot roadways
Tires can become damaged when they come into contact with hot roads. Underinflated tires may overheat and blow out, while hot air in overinflated tires may expand and burst. Be sure to keep your tires inflated to the correct pressure at all times.
Keep your vehicle’s fluids topped
Motor oil, transmission fluids, and other fluids lubricate and cool your vehicle while it runs. Extreme heat can cause these essential fluids to dry up quickly. If they evaporate, your vehicle may encounter increased friction and decreased cooling ability. Avoid this problem by topping your vehicle’s fluids regularly.
Check your car battery regularly
Constant, extreme heat can evaporate fluids, damage battery connections, and cause batteries to wear out more quickly. Make sure to test any battery older than three years before the start of summer and regularly check your battery.
Keep an eye on your air conditioning system
Air conditioning is a standard feature in most modern cars because it protects you from extreme external temperatures while on the road. Before driving in the extreme summer heat, check your air conditioning system to ensure it functions properly and has enough refrigerant to cool the vehicle.
Prepare in advance for possible breakdowns
No matter how careful you are, accidents can still happen. You can keep yourself safe by preparing in advance for potential breakdowns. Keep an emergency kit in your vehicle at all times with water, rations, jumper cables, spare tires, flashlights, basic tools, and first aid supplies.
How Does Hot Weather Affect a Car’s Performance?
Driving in hot conditions can have several adverse effects on a car’s performance. Extreme heat causes fluids to evaporate more quickly, shortening battery life, increasing moving parts’ friction, and making it more difficult to cool the engine.
Tires also wear more quickly when the rubber comes into contact with scorching road surfaces and the interior air expands rapidly. Cooling, steering, and brake systems tend to have a more challenging time functioning in hot weather conditions.
Contact Our Car Accident Attorneys in San Antonio, TX
If you were involved in a car accident due to excessive heat, the San Antonio car accident attorney of Ketterman Rowland & Westlund could help. Contact us today to discuss the details of your case in a free initial case review.
Douglas D. Ketterman is the originator and founder of Ketterman, Rowland & Westlund where he currently serves as President and Managing Shareholder. Douglas has extensive experience in handling all types of civil litigation. He graduated with honors from St. Mary’s School of Law in 1989 and has been Board Certified as a Specialist in Personal Injury Trial Law since 1998 by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.