If this is your first year driving a semi-truck, you’re probably glad to be done with harsh winter conditions. However, summer heat brings a new set of challenges. The following tips can help you keep your truck in quality condition and avoid more complicated auto repair down the line. 

How to Maintain Your Truck This Summer

1. Check Coolant Levels

Truck radiators are prone to overheating during summer, but coolant keeps the engine at a consistent temperature, even when it works hard on long trips. This fluid degrades over time, which can prevent it from traveling normally throughout the radiator. During the summer, check your fluid levels and replace or top them off if you notice they're low. If your temperature gauge rises consistently or you notice fluid leaks under your truck, check your coolant levels or take your truck in for an auto repair. 

2. Inspect Tires

The air in your tires expands when heated, which can make them more prone to blowouts. Alternatively, if you fill your tires in the heat, they may contract if you later drive in cooler weather during a long trip. The recommended pressure levels are meant to be measured in the cold, so check your tires in the morning before you’ve driven and ahead of the afternoon heat. 

3. Test the Air Conditioning

No driver wants to go far in the summer sun without air conditioning, but the hoses and fittings that make up your truck’s air conditioner may become loose after months of sitting idle during the winter. These hoses run under the engine and into the interior, so you can’t easily access them. Instead, turn down the temperature before it starts to get hot outside to make sure it gets cool. If you notice a musty smell, there could be mold in the lines that needs to be professionally cleaned. If your truck doesn't get cool quickly, it's also likely time for a repair.

4. Replace Old Batteries

Heat can cause a chemical reaction in batteries that increases the chance of corrosion. When corrosion builds up around the connections, the battery can’t provide enough power for the engine and electrical systems. Check the battery before long trips and charge it if necessary. If you have to charge it multiple times throughout the summer, you may need to replace it. 

If you do experience any issues with your truck this summer, contact Tomah Wrecker & Repair, LLC in Wisconsin for their auto repair services. For more than 50 years, they have been providing 24/7 roadside assistance for standard vehicles and larger trucks. Visit their website for a full list of services, or call (608) 372-2550 to schedule an appointment.