As the rainy season approaches, Seattleites pack away their summer flip flops in exchange for their warm shoes and raincoats in preparation for the next 6 months of rain and cold. With every change of season there is a new stress put upon your mode of transportation. Whether you walk to work, ride the bus, or drive your car, there are seasonal changes that you should make in order for a comfortable commute. Your car relies upon you to prepare it for the season ahead.
As the roads get wet, visibility is decreased and your vehicle’s stopping distance becomes more important. Worn tire tread can double or triple your stopping distance on wet road conditions. Driving on wet roads with bald tires is a recipe for hydroplaning, which can cause you to lose complete control of your vehicle. The importance of a safe stop on wet roadways makes having properly working brakes imperative. As a service to you and your family, as well as the other drivers on the road, you should have your tires and brakes inspected before the seasons change.
Chances are that you haven’t used your wiper blades all summer, and the next heavy rain could prove to be an unsafe drive home if your wipers are not clearing the windshield. Check your wipers and windshield washers now, before the rain comes.
Did you know that the end of summer doesn’t mean that you’re done with air conditioning? Your vehicle’s defroster uses the air conditioning system to dry the air that defrosts the windshield. Poorly performing air conditioning will lead to fogged up windows, causing poor visibility all season long.
Automobiles are not waterproof. There are few areas that are susceptible to water leaks, such as the sunroof, windshield seals, window seals, and tail lamp. Newer cars often have electronic control modules hidden under the seats and carpeting that are susceptible to flooding and electrical failure if there is any water leaking into the cabin.
Evergreen trees keep the Pacific Northwest green and beautiful all year long, but the needles from pine trees can be a nuisance, often plugging up firewall and sunroof drains causing water to flood the cabin during a heavy rain. Trunk seals are also a collection spot for pine needles, causing the trunk to flood with water. To prevent floods and water damage take a few minutes to look your car over and clean off any pine needles or debris that could cause costly water damage.
As you are shopping for your new rain jacket in preparation for the upcoming rainy season, take a moment to think about your car. Is it ready for the season ahead?
Adam Christopher McKay