Hi there! Did you know that with extremes temperatures there are some car components that are exposed to a greater risk of breaking down? Take note of which ones they are to try to avoid incidents caused by them.
Extreme heat can be harmful to both you and your car. Keep reading to discover which elements of your car are most likely to be affected by heat.
High temperatures negatively affect the performance of the engine, which can lose up to 15% of its power. The explanation? The engine needs more air to run and the hotter it is, the less oxygen the air has. So every degree of temperature that your car acquires is detrimental to its subsequent performance on the road.
Heat causes accelerated wear as the sulfur molecules found in the battery break down more quickly. As a consequence, the increase in plaques causes the loss of gravity of the electrolytes, which accelerates their discharge.
You must make sure that the terminals are well fixed, that there are no liquid leaks and that this, if it is a battery with maintenance (something uncommon), is at the necessary level.
Wheels become more vulnerable with friction on hot asphalt. As a result of the increase in atmospheric temperature, tire pressure is reduced due to heat, causing their braking effectiveness to be compromised. Additionally, the useful life of the tread is impacted.
- Check its pressure, also that of the spare wheel.
- Check that there are no cracks (something typical when they are several years old), or deformed areas.
- If they show uneven wear, it may be because the shock absorbers are in poor condition or the brake system is not working as it should.
Brakes and suspensions
An overheated car brakes worse, the brake fluid lasts less and the discs can become deformed in extreme cases. Helps maintain the car by using low gears to reduce the speed of the vehicle and avoid using the brakes on long descents on roads and highways.
The heat causes an increase in gasoline or diesel consumption by an average of one liter every 60 miles.
The coolant is responsible for ensuring that the engine does not overheat when it is running. The lack of this in the vehicle, added to the heat of the direct sun, can give you a major scare or cause a serious breakdown. So do not delay and take the opportunity to check the rest of the liquids, in case in any case evaporation could have damaged them affect.
All must be between the maximum and the minimum. They are engine oil, coolant, brakes and power steering, and windshield wipers.
Any adverse weather element affects the sheet metal. The heat is no less so. Surely you have ever seen a very old car parked on the street, and it is discolored, stripped, dull… can you imagine that your car ends up like this? Look for shade whenever you can if you are one of those who likes things to last for many years or increase the frequency with which you visit the maintenance and inspection services in charge of painting.
Plastic elements of the interior
Many times we only look at the engine, but prolonged exposure to high temperatures can deform the vehicle’s plastic, affecting upholstery, closures or decorative elements.
A temperature below 10 degrees can already cause irreparable damage to a vehicle, simple exposure to the winter cold can affect elements such as locks, windshield wipers, wiper fluid or, of course, the battery and more.
The most advisable thing is to cover the car with a tarp. This prevents direct freezing of some sensitive parts such as the windshield wipers. In addition, it is protected against possible hailstorms.
There are tarpaulins that are specific for each model, or others that are half-size and have rubber bands at the bottom to adjust well to the car. If you cannot, or do not want to, use full tarps, it is at least advisable to use smaller fabrics to prevent freezing of the windshield. This way we will avoid scratching the ice that has formed on it during the night.
One of the parts that is most frequently damaged when the car is exposed to the cold is the windshield wipers, due to the freezing of the windshield itself. When this happens, the rubbers of the ‘clean’ ones harden and remain adhered to the frozen glass, and can suffer serious damage when separated. Therefore, if we are in an area with frost or frequent snowfall, it is best to lift them or put a cork stopper between them and the glass.
It is also highly recommended in these situations not to use only water in the windshield wiper fluid reservoir, as it will freeze quickly, preventing it from working normally or even breaking the entire circuit. There are specific liquids with antifreeze elements that are very effective.
To properly protect the car from the cold, in addition to checking the coolant level, you must see its condition. Over time and use, it loses properties that leave our engine exposed to inclement weather. As a general rule, antifreeze liquids have vivid colors, but if we see that it is already tending to be translucent or is simply blackened, it means that it is reaching the end of its useful life, so we must change it as soon as possible.
This substance has a resistance to freezing of up to 20 degrees below zero, but if many impurities have accumulated this figure drops considerably, leaving our propellant more exposed.
The cold can affect its operation due to low temperatures. Although excessive heat is harmful to this type of components, low temperatures could stop the flow of current, as a result, when you are in a hurry, your car may not start for this reason.
The solution to this type of situation lies in a battery check after three years of use. Likewise, it is recommended that you clean it daily.
Gases behave differently according to the temperatures to which they are subjected. When cold they tend to decrease their volume, so the tires may not react well, especially at this time.
The best thing you can do is go to a gas station and ask them to check your pressure.
The freezing of locks is an inconvenience that happens a lot in winter, firstly because due to this phenomenon we can break the key upon any attempt to open it, or the lock may become blocked. If we see that the key does not turn, it is useless to use force.
The main reason for freezing is the humidity in the air, which can reach extreme temperatures, eventually causing the locks to freeze. One way to prevent freezing is to protect the locks by making it difficult for water or snow to pass through them.
In the cold we must also check our braking system, because with low temperatures they lose effectiveness. Its poor condition translates into longer braking periods and increased chances of suffering an accident.
The brake pads are important, as accumulated dirt and moisture can cause squeaking and friction with the brake discs. This can reduce the braking capacity or excessively increase the braking temperature, leading to the pads crystallizing and causing them to lose their properties. The possible freezing of brake fluid is also a factor to take into account with low temperatures.
The air conditioning system is key to reducing condensation in the cabin and defogging the windows, so its correct operation in this season is of great importance.
It is important to check that it works correctly so that, in addition to helping us combat the cold, it offers us maximum visibility. It must be taken into account that the heating radiator is extremely easy to become clogged. All because of the solid waste floating in the coolant circuit. In this case, the best advice is to go to your trusted workshop.
Remember that at RSG Magazine you will always have different options for workshops and stores where you can go for help to solve any of the problems mentioned above. Take care of yourself, your family and your car!