Seasonal changes impact your vehicle's functions

Warm days and chilly nights are common in the spring and have the potential to wreak havoc on your vehicle. Every time the temperature rises or falls, it means that your tire pressure changes. Fluids in your vehicle may freeze overnight if temperatures drop. During the day, gases expand, putting pressure on the parts of your vehicle that warm and cool. Metal expands and contracts, getting tight and becoming loose.

These subtle changes have the potential to make a vehicle dangerous to drive over time. That's why most people have their vehicle maintenance performed once or twice per year. It's a good idea to do so at least once in the spring in order to know how the winter affected your vehicle's condition.

While Tennessee doesn't often get snow or ice, changing temperatures and weather conditions affect vehicles on the roads. These changes could impact drivers, too. Here are a few reasons performing spring maintenance is necessary to prevent car crashes.

1. Tires lose pressure when temperatures drop

Have you ever filled up a tire one day and found it was extremely low the next with no explanation? That could be a result of changing temperatures. You want to ensure you always fill up your tires when it's cool outside or, at the very least, the tire is cool.

The recommended PSI is listed on the side of the tire wall. You should always fill your tire to that level when it's cool, as heat makes it expand higher than the recommended level when traveling. The cool PSI is the minimum level your tire needs to support your vehicle's weight. Tires not at their recommended specifications may end up bursting or going flat. They also won't grip the road appropriately.

2. Leaks spring when temperatures change

Changing temperatures may crack sealants and tubing in your vehicle's coolant system or along the gas tank. If you notice any drips or puddles below your vehicle, make sure to have your vehicle checked immediately. Leaking gas, oil or other fluids could result in your vehicle overheating, catching on fire or running out of fuel on the highway.

3. Fluids need to be replaced in the spring

Do a thorough check to make sure that your vehicle has enough oil, transmission and windshield wiper fluids. Not having windshield wiper fluid could lead to an accident if your vision is obscured by a dirty windshield. Checking your fluids helps prevent that from happening.

Vehicle maintenance is a simple and necessary part of owning a car or truck. Collisions happen, but many are preventable. If you get into an accident with a motorist due to their poorly-maintained vehicle, you may be able to successfully pursue a claim for damages.

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