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How to Get Your Car Ready for Warm Weather

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Getty Images

One of the undeniable signs of better weather is the day everyone lines up at the car wash to send all the salt, dirt and grime from a major snowfall down the drain.

As the weather heats up, there are a few other things you should consider to keep your car in peak shape. We’ve gathered all the details for you here, with a little help from our friends at O’Reilly Auto Parts.

1) Check your fluids. You won’t need windshield washer fluid that works in subzero temperatures for awhile, but you might as well check your supply of an all-season or de-bugger mix. Consult your manual to appropriate levels of brake fluid and automatic transition fluid and top off as needed, Bankrate advises.

2) Have your brakes inspected. You should do this every six months, according to the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence.

3) Check for paint scratches or chips—and make sure your windshield is clean and conditioned. Fix any paint damage you find to prevent it from getting worse and follow these steps to get your windshield in top condition:

4) Flush and refill the cooling system/radiator. Of course, start with checking the recommendations in the service manual, but this likely is a good time to check the “level, condition and concentration” of your coolant, according to the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. (Remember: Wait for your engine to cool down before you take off the radiator cap.)

5) Replace your air filter for when you start using the air conditioning. In fact, if Mother Nature tends to shortchange you on spring and move straight to summer temperatures, Independent Motors suggests testing your AC to make sure it’s still functioning properly before you need it, too.

On a lighter note, if you crave driving with the windows down and the music turned up, think about your radio and stereo system. If you’re looking to replace an antenna or upgrade your speakers, O’Reilly has several options here.

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