The last of the snow is melted, and Canadian drivers are eager to hit the road this spring and enjoy some much-needed warmer weather. Before you put the pedal to the metal, however, it’s important to treat your vehicle to a spring tune up to help it operate as safely as possible, according to representatives from the Automotive Industries Association (AIA) of Canada through its Be Car Care Aware program, and the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA).
“May is Car Care Month – a time for drivers to invest in the safety of their vehicles to protect themselves and those that they will share the road with this spring and summer,” said Marc Brazeau, President and CEO, AIA Canada.
Maintenance and repairs are becoming increasingly important as Canadians drive their vehicles longer. The average age of a vehicle in Canada was 9.3 years in 2011, with the average vehicle now being retired at 320,000 kilometres, according to AIA Canada’s 2012 Outlook Study, produced by DesRosiers Automotive Consultants Inc.
Fortunately, according to another study conducted by DesRosiers, 85.6% of Canadians are prioritizing vehicle servicing and repairs. Reasons for maintaining their vehicles included avoiding large repairs in the future, increasing family safety, enhancing environmental performance of their vehicles, and protecting resale value.
“Safety is paramount when out on the road,” according to Jeff Walker, Vice President, Public Affairs at CAA. “And, if Canadians can keep their vehicles as safe as possible, and protect their investment at the same time, it’s a win-win scenario.”
Below are some tips to get your vehicle ready for the spring season:
Check your fluid levels. There are several fluids that require attention, including engine oil; power steering, brake and transmission fluids; and windshield washer solvent. Fluids are typically inexpensive and easy to change, but without them, vehicle reliability and functions may be affected, which can lead to expensive repair costs and pose safety risks.
Change oil and oil filters. Changing the oil and the oil filter as recommended in your vehicle’s owner’s manual is one of the best ways to keep the engine running trouble free. Neglecting to replace engine oil can result in poor engine performance, higher fuel consumption and even severe engine damage.
Replace your wiper blades. If they’re torn or cracked your wiper blades won’t do you much good in the middle of unrelenting spring showers when visibility is reduced.
Check your lighting. Check all exterior and interior lighting to identify any problems. When your vehicle’s lighting is defective, other motorists may not get the message that you intend to stop or turn. The end result could be disastrous.
Make vehicle maintenance a priority to protect yourself and prolong the life of your vehicle by taking it to a licensed automotive service professional for a spring tune-up today!
For more tips on how to improve the safety of your vehicle, you can visit: www.BeCarCareAware.ca.
AIA is the national trade association representing the automotive aftermarket industry in Canada. The aftermarket is a $19.4 billion industry that employs 420,000 people. The industry is composed of companies that manufacture, distribute and install automotive replacement parts, accessories, tools, and equipment. As part of its mandate, AIA works to promote preventative maintenance through its Be Car Care Aware consumer education program.
CAA is a federation of nine clubs providing more than 5.8 million members with exceptional emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services. CAA also advocates on issues of concern to its members, including road safety, the environment, mobility, infrastructure and consumer protection.