AAA expects the July Fourth holiday to be the busiest time for travelers since 2007, and the auto club is warning people the extreme heat could take a toll on cars.
Mechanics said there are several parts in the engine that are particularly at risk of damage in triple-digit heat.
At Joey’s Truck and Auto Repair Friday afternoon as temperatures spiked above 100 degrees both inside and outside the garage, mechanics said the battery is the most important part drivers need to check before hitting the road this holiday weekend.
Extreme heat, much like the string of 100-degree days that will impact the July Fourth weekend in the Carolinas, can dry up the fluids in the battery, which will stop it from working.
People should take the time to have the battery and all the basics inspected before any long drive, said mechanic Joey Aycock.
“I think it’s always a good idea to have a vacation check, to have your mechanic check the fluids, the tires, the wiper blades. You never know this time of year when you’re going to get in a summer thunderstorm or that sort of thing,” he said.
Aycock said people should also inspect the radiator hose for cracks or damage because a car can overheat if coolant is not flowing properly.
He said tires should also be on a vacationing driver’s checklist. A blowout can occur if they are damaged or inflated to the wrong air pressure, he said.
The mechanics added one final piece of advice: be careful before popping the hood to check the engine if the car has been sitting in direct sunlight. Any of the metal parts could be hot enough to burn a person.
Do as they do, they said, and pull it into a garage or covered area for at least an hour to let it cool down.
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