How to protect your car from the heat

By David Bonnici, 18 Jan 2017 Car Advice

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car windscreen and visor

Your car goes through a lot in summer even when it’s parked. Here are some tips to for protecting it from the relentless Australian heat.

Solar shield

A windscreen sunshade doesn’t just keep your car a little cooler so you don’t burn your legs on the seat or seatbelt buckles when you hop in. It also protects your car’s interior surfaces including the dashboard, steering wheel and seats. A rear sunshield is also a good idea.

Get the tint

If your car doesn’t have tinted windows its worth investing getting them done as it will help protect the interior, and the car’s occupants, from damaging UV rays. The investment should pay off come resale time.

At the carwash

A shiny car is a cooler car as it will better reflect the sun’s rays than a dirty car, which is more likely to absorb heat. A lack of rain means bird dropping, tree sap, bugs and dirt will bake into your paintwork making it more prone to damage from the sun’s UV rays so keep the car clean and wax when necessary. Cleaning is also a good way to ensure summer creepy crawlies like spiders don’t establish a home base in nooks and crannies such as the wing mirrors and in vents.

man washing car

Clean and protect

Use vinyl and/or leather protectants on interior surfaces to provide an extra protective layer and to stop them becoming brittle.

Under pressure

Check your tyre pressure regularly as it will change with the weather. Don’t top up your tyres in the middle of a hot day as there will be less, and potentially insufficient, pressure once things cool down.

man inflating tyre

Keep fluids up

Fluids are obviously more likely to evaporate faster in the heat to be sure to regularly check oil, brake and power steering fluid, the battery (where applicable) and radiator coolant levels. Always top up coolant via the plastic reservoir and not the radiator. If it’s an older model do not open the radiator cap until the engine has cooled down and the pressure has eased – about an hour should do it.

Blade run

Test your windscreen wipers as they can become brittle and collect dirt during dry periods which could make them ineffective when that summer downpour does come.

Got your car all ready for the heat? Now read our summer car and driving tips.