Annual check-ups vital for cars to survive extreme East Texas heat

The Texas summer heat can cause serious damage to your vehicle.
Published: Jun. 22, 2023 at 11:52 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 22, 2023 at 6:44 PM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The Texas summer heat can cause serious damage to your vehicle.

Expert Gary Stewart from Stewart’s Donnybrook Automotive offered his advice on how East Texas drivers can keep their cars and trucks running well during the hottest time of the year. While it is not always possible to keep your vehicle out of the sun, it is important to be proactive about checking up on the most vulnerable parts.

“The first thing that everyone needs to do is have a mechanic that they trust that they can take their car to, because there are certain things that need to be checked that you can’t check at home, and you won’t know what you’re checking anyway,” said Stewart. “If you see something, you probably wouldn’t know what you just saw.”

Having a trustworthy mechanic is just the first step of basic car maintenance. Stewart recommends taking vehicles to an auto shop for a checkup at the beginning of every summer. He said it is better and cheaper to be proactive rather than reactive. There are several parts a mechanic will check in the summer months including rubber tubes, tires, fluids and windshield wipers.

“They tend to be stressed in the heat, the extreme heat. Your car is just like the body. We function much better when we’re cold than we do when we’re hot,” Stewart said.

He estimated about 80 percent of his customers in the summer bring in vehicles with heat-related damage.

“Anything you hear you didn’t hear before, anything you smell you didn’t smell before, anything that’s out of the ordinary, you want to go get it checked. And don’t put it off,” he urged.

While it is important to take notice of new smells or noises, car experts are the best resource to make sure the problems do not become larger or more expensive. They can help prevent problems and fix things before it is too late.

The average car checkup costs less than $100 and takes about an hour to complete.