How to Prepare Your Car for Summer

The summer weather is rolling in, which means it’s time for another round of seasonal maintenance. Here are a few ways to prepare your Ford for summer.

Change the oil

Changing the oil in your car is one of the most important routine maintenance tasks. Old oil can’t lubricate, cool, or protect vital engine components as well as fresh oil can. Check your vehicle’s owner manual to determine how often you need to visit Midwest Ford for an oil change. Thanks to advances in engine oil technology, the 3,000-mile rule is irrelevant. Most vehicles can go anywhere from 5,000 to 15,000 miles between oil changes.

Check the battery

Checking your battery is a great way to start off summer. After all, you don’t want to end up stranded because of a dead battery. Inspecting your battery doesn’t involve a lot of labor and can be done in a few minutes

Start by inspecting the battery for any bulges, bumps, or other deformities. Remove any corrosion from the posts and tighten the connections. If your Ford’s battery is more than three years old, it’s time to consider replacing it.

Inspect the tires

Inspecting your car’s tires for damage helps improve your safety on the road. Keep an eye out for any bumps, bulges, or uneven tread wear. It pays to check each tire’s pressure every week too. As warmer weather rolls in, the tire pressure is likely to increase. If left unchecked, that could lead to a blowout!

To get your Ford ready for the summer season, visit the Midwest Ford service team today!

Warning Signs That It’s Time to Change Your Brakes

Brakes are among your vehicle’s most important components, but there are few reliable guides (like mileage or vehicle age) for knowing when to change them. That’s because brakes wear differently depending on environmental conditions and driving habits. Instead, you should pay attention to a few key signs that will let you know it’s time for new brakes.

First, listen for strange sounds. Most brake pads come with wear indicators, which are essentially a thin strip of metal that begins to rub on the rotor once the pad gets low. If you hear squeaking or squealing, it’s a sign you may need new brakes. Also listen for grinding, as this could be a caliper hitting the rotor.

Next, pay attention to how your car is driving. If you notice that your vehicle pulls to one side or the other when you hit the brakes, you may have a caliper that’s stuck. Even if your foot isn’t on the brake pedal, pulling is likely caused by a bad brake component.

Finally, be alert for tactile signs. For instance, you may notice vibrations, thuds, or pulsing when you step on the brakes. These are other signs that your rotors might be warped, as you shouldn’t really feel anything through the pedal if the brakes are normal.

If you think it’s about time to change your brakes, or if you need our certified service team to check for you, schedule your service appointment at Midwest Ford today!

Get Your Car Ready for Winter

Winter has arrived. If you haven’t prepared your car for the change of season, it’s time to get on it! Here are some easy tips for getting your car ready for winter that will help keep you safe and warm on the road.

Follow your maintenance schedule

Check your owner’s manual — it has a complete yearly schedule for you to follow so you can keep your car in the best shape possible. You’d be amazed at how much of a difference regular maintenance has on your vehicle’s performance.

Have car problems looked at

If you’re noticing any issues right now, like trouble starting your car or stalling, get it looked at right away, because it’s only going to get worse as the weather gets colder. It’ll be a much bigger inconvenience to get stranded with a dead battery than to have it replaced now.

Replace your wipers and refill washer fluid

Winter driving means dirty, salty, icy windshields, without much or any rain to clean them. Make sure your washer fluid is filled up and your wiper blades are fresh so you can see through your windshield.

Put an emergency kit together

This is vital year-round but especially important during the winter. You should keep water and dry foods in the car, as well as an extra set of warm clothes and blankets, a flashlight, and flares. You should also have a shovel and a bag of ice or cat litter in your car’s trunk; if your car gets stuck in the snow, these items will help you clear a path and gain more traction.

Schedule a maintenance check at Midwest Ford to make sure your car is ready for the demands of winter driving.

Seasonal Car Maintenance Basics

As winter finally draws to an end, it’s the perfect time to perform some seasonal car maintenance. Spring is a great time for a checkup, as harsh winter weather can often worsen common vehicle problems. Here are a few ways you can take care of your vehicle this spring.

 seasonal car maintenance

Get a car wash

Keeping your car clean isn’t just a matter of looking good. In fact, routinely washing your car can prevent rust damage to your car’s exterior as well as help make it easier to identify any new damages. And let’s face it, driving a clean car feels better, too.

Replace your wiper blades

We tend to use our windshield wipers a lot in the winter. And between the cold temperatures, frost, road salt, and ice, winter driving can really do a number on them. If your wiper blades are cracked, bent, or in any way damaged, it’s time to replace them.

Keep an eye on your tires

Colder temperatures during the winter can cause the air pressure in your tires to fluctuate greatly, so be sure to check your tires for proper pressure and alignment as spring gets underway. Take a look at your tire tread, too, and invest in new tires if the tread is worn down.

For an inspection or any other routine maintenance needs, give us a call or stop by Midwest Ford’s service department.