GREAT FALLS — April is National Car Care Month, and Memorial Day – the unofficial beginning of summer and the summer travel season – is just a few weeks away.
Mechanics say this is the time to get your car into the shop. There are several things you need to have checked out to make sure your car is ready to hit the road and mechanics were already very busy.
Inside Gear Grabbers Garage in Great Falls, there was no shortage of work to do Thursday.
“Most people are quite a ways out. Lack of help and just the way things are,” Gear Grabbers Garage owner Luke Cote said.
The backup could get worse once summer travel gets into full swing.
“Our business really picks up about Memorial Day and on Fridays,” Cote explains. “When you get your oil changed, make sure that they’re checking your coolant. If it’s due to be changed, change it out.”
Tire tread and wheel bearings are also important to check.
“Wheel bearings on trailers especially. There’s a lot more traffic on the highway all summer long. A lot more horse trailers, boats. Make sure your wheel bearings are packed or at least inspected,” said Cote.
Another reason to get your car inspected for the summer travel season early, parts may be hard to come by.
“Just a break job on certain vehicles that before you could get them right now, it takes three or four days to get break parts anymore,” said Troy Weninger, Carnahan’s Towing and Repair Shop Manager.
When you do hit the road keep an eye on your gas gauge.
“We do see a lot of fuel pumps during the summer. I always tell people ‘Keep your tank full as much as you can.’ A lot of vehicles nowadays, the fuel pumps are in the tank. So fuel does help cool the electric motors of the fuel pump,” said Weninger.
Click here for more car-care tips on the AAA website.