This time of year, everyone has turned on their air conditioning in the car. As Texans, we use our A/C a lot. But have you checked to make sure the air its cooling you off with is clean smelling? If you notice an odor, there could be mold and/or mildew growing in your A/C system. This is not only annoying to breathe in every time you’re in the car, but it does pose a health risk. Most of the problems that are caused by mold and mildew are because the spores get in your lungs, something the air conditioner helps with. Mold can cause a range of symptoms including stuffy, running noses to headaches and rashes. Mildew is equally problematic and causes things like sinus infections, upper respiratory infections and sneezing. To prevent your car from making you sick, as soon as you smell an odor, please take your car in to be checked and cleaned.
For most of us, driving is easy and muscle memory. You start the car, put it in drive and off we go to conquer the world. One of the key things that keeps our car going so we can put it into drive is our transmission. We routinely change our brake pads, brake fluid and fill up the car with gas, but have you ever checked to see when you should get a transmission flush? Your vehicles service manual will tell you the suggested intervals to have the transmission serviced and this is vitally important to keeping your car going smoothly on the road. Transmission fluid lubricates the transmission so you can shift as you are flying down the tollway or just get out of your driveway. This fluid has some pretty awesome properties; it will flow through the transmission whether it’s in the negatives or over 100 degrees outside. (We are all familiar with the latter, too). If the fluid is too old, it will lose some of its properties and could turn to varnish or sludge in the transmission which leads to serious problems. If your transmission has sludge or varnish, just like you engine, it will not be able to smoothly transition between gears, the transmission could start slipping which causes temperatures to rise, and eventually the transmission can fail all together. We can keep this from happening by following our service manuals and getting our transmissions flushed at the appropriate intervals. Stop by your closest Autoscope for a transmission service!
Living in Texas, we all know a lot about the heat. We know that our air conditioning raises electric bills, we know we and our plants need more water, we know that a sunny day can be a mixed blessing. However, what not everyone knows is that the heat of this time of year can cause some serious damage to our wind shield wipers. With the random rain storms that come with this time of year, we need to check on our wipers to ensure our safety, along with everyone we are sharing the road with.
There are a few things that cause our wiper blades to deteriorate.
Heat. On a nice summer day the temperature on your windshield could reach over 145 degrees F. This slowly roasts the rubber of the wiper blade and causes them to crack. Cracks are what causes streaks and “chattering” to occur.
Ozone. The ozone in the atmosphere, which is highly concentrated in high traffic areas, oxidizes the rubber and leads to cracking.
Cold. Lest we forget, summer will come to an end and then we will be hit with cold temperatures. The cold air hardens the rubber and allows water to seep under it which causes smearing.
Windshield wipers were first patented in 1905 by Mary Anderson, since then there has been only one change. In the past 10 years, a new wiper has come out, the flat bladed wiper. These wipers are held down with uniform pressure compared to previous wipers which only had pressure points. These new blades are also more streamlined and smaller than their predecessors. And if your car didn’t come with these great new wiper blades, don’t worry! Most now have adapters to fit them on any car!