Summer’s Here! Time to Get On the Road!

 

Father teaching son to change the oil

With the end of the school year, the summer is the perfect time to get your teen behind the wheel of the family car. Teaching your teenager how to drive isn’t the only lesson you can offer; give them a little extra help and show them how to properly care for the family car!

The Importance of Oil Changes

It may seem easy to just let the mileage rise without taking the car in for an oil change, but you can explain to your child how dirty oil can damage an engine. Oil is the lubricant that allows pistons to move without damaging your engine block. As it becomes dirty, it starts carrying particulates that can grind against the moving parts. This can be disastrous for your engine, so make sure to tell your teenager how important oil changes are!

Checking Fluids

Oil is only one of the fluids your car needs to function properly. Teach your budding driver to check transmission fluid, brake fluid, coolant and power steering fluid. Each serves a very specific function and needs to be checked at least twice a year. Many of them, like brake fluid, last for quite some time, but show your teenager what fluids should and shouldn’t look like when checked. If your car has a battery with a water reservoir, make sure to have them check that regularly, too!

A Pre-Driving Checklist

Small traffic tickets can add up quickly, and for things like burnt-out lightbulbs or malfunctioning taillights. Teach your teenager to do a pre-driving checklist where they:

  • Check the tires
  • Check the lights for functionality
  • Make sure the trunk is closed
  • Check their mirrors

If they do this every time they drive, they’ll develop the good habits that will help them drive successfully this summer and for the rest of their lives!