Protecting Your Honda From the Summer Heat

With record-breaking temperatures becoming more common here in Canada, it has never been more important to take steps to protect your vehicle from the stifling heat. Here are some simple but essential tips to remember to minimize any potential damage to your car caused by the intense summer weather.

Park in the Shade

One of the easiest and most important steps you can take to protect your vehicle is to park it in the shade as much as possible. This is especially crucial to do during those peak hours of the day when the heat is most intense – generally between noon and 3 pm. Prolonged exposure to the sun and UV rays can oxidize the vehicle’s exterior, eventually leading to a faded, washed-out colour. Finding a shady spot to park will also keep the interior temperature as low as possible to prevent drying or cracking along the dashboard. Even if it requires a little more time and effort to find a spot in the shade, it’s well worth it.  However, try to avoid sap-producing trees as this will damage your paint/clearcoat. 

Crack Open the Window

If it’s safe to do so, crack open one window slightly, so it’s just below the seal of the window frame. This will help to equalize the air pressure in the cabin and keep the interior cooler too.

Use a Windshield Sun Protector

Windshield visors are specifically designed to block out the sun. So during those extra hot heatwaves, prop one up across the windshield to keep your car cooler while preventing sun damage.

Wash and Dry Your Vehicle Frequently

Minerals, dust, dirt, debris and dead bugs can easily accumulate on the surface of the vehicle during those summer road trips. When these combine with intense heat, they can end up releasing acids and cause reactions that may impact the coating and paint. By washing your vehicle regularly, you can avoid any corrosion or fading. Not to mention that tree sap and bird dropping are especially corrosive. We recommend washing it at least once every two weeks in the summer.

Wax the Car

Waxing your car is an excellent way to help protect it from the sun and environmental debris. Car wax acts almost like sunscreen for the vehicle, shielding it from UV rays and other elements. We recommend applying a wax coating to your vehicle at least twice per year -once in the spring and again in late fall.

Check Tire Pressure Regularly

The summer heat can increase the risk of underinflated tires from blowing out. The heat also accelerates tire wear and makes them prone to cracking. Check the tire pressure once per month during the summer to make sure they are at a safe level. 

Check the Battery

Battery fluid can evaporate quickly during the summer, and the heat can also cause corrosion. To avoid damage, check the battery regularly and wipe up any fluid, so it doesn’t exacerbate any damage to the battery components.

Check All the Fluids

Oil levels should be checked regularly, at least once a month or just before you go on a long drive. Always check first thing in the morning when the vehicle has been stationary for a while and ensure the car is on level ground. Nowadays, newer cars have electric power steering. If you have an older car with hydraulic power steering, you will need to check the level is within the minimum and maximum level indicator. Do top up with the correct oil as described in your manual if it’s below the minimum level. 

The transmission fluid needs to be checked at the same time and period as your engine oil. This is done when the engine is running at normal temperatures when the vehicle is in “park.” Fill up accordingly if it’s below minimum level with the correct oil as described in your manual. CUTS do not need to be checked. Lastly, the brake fluid should be between the minimum and maximum levels. Only top up the fluid when it is below minimum. Avoid filling more than the minimum level as the fluid will increase every time the brake pads are replaced. Only use approved brake fluid as described in your manual.

Maintenance Check

Drop off your vehicle at the beginning of summer so a trained technician can inspect it, top-up any fluids, check the tire pressures, and repair any issues before you embark on any road trips. It’s also a good idea to have a maintenance check done at the end of the season to inspect for any damage caused over the summer months. 

Leave your vehicle with our trusted technicians at Ottawa Honda. They will perform a thorough inspection, handle any repairs, and ensure your vehicle is ready to take on the summer season.