AAA offers “tips” for motorists | Local News

AAA CAROLINAS

CHARLOTTE — With a heat wave expected to continue in the Carolinas for the next few days, AAA is urging motorists to be careful when driving in extreme heat.

“A vehicle’s interior can heat up 20 degrees in just 10 minutes,” said Tiffany Wright, spokesperson, AAA – The Auto Club Group in the Carolinas. “It is essential that motorists take precautions and not underestimate the risks of excessive heat. Performing basic safety checks before hitting the road, as well as being vigilant around children and pets are both essential.

AAA provides the following safety tips to keep children safe:

• Never leave children unattended in a vehicle, even if the windows are open or the air conditioning is on.

• Do not allow children to play in an unsupervised vehicle. Teach children that a vehicle is not a suitable hiding place in a game of hide and seek.

• Lock vehicle doors and trunks, even in driveways and garages, and keep keys out of reach of children.

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• Before locking a vehicle and driving away, make a habit of always checking the front and rear seats.

• Those who normally drop off a child at a babysitter or daycare center should ask the caregiver to call if the child does not arrive as expected.

• Place a purse, wallet or cell phone in the back seat. This way, people are reminded to look in the back seat before leaving the vehicle. People can also keep a stuffed animal in a child car seat. When the child is with you, put it in the front seat to remind you that the child is in the back.

• If a child or pet is seen alone in a locked car, call 911 immediately and follow the instructions of emergency personnel.

• Rising temperatures in a vehicle can also put pets at risk. Never leave an animal in a parked car, even if the windows are partially open. Even on sunny days, a vehicle can quickly reach a temperature that endangers an animal.

AAA recommends motorists address these five key areas to help maintain their vehicle in high temperatures:

• Mount the battery securely in place to minimize vibration.

• Clean any corrosive buildup from the battery terminals and cable clamps.

• Make sure the clamps are tight enough so they don’t move.

• If a car battery is more than three years old, it is a good idea to have it tested by a qualified technician to determine its lifespan. The test can be performed at any AAA authorized auto repair center, or AAA members can have a AAA mobile battery service technician come to their location and test their battery for free. If the battery needs to be replaced, the technician can usually replace it on the spot. For more information on AAA Mobile Battery Service, visit AAA.com/Battery.

• Have the system flushed and coolant replaced periodically as recommended by the vehicle manufacturer.

• Consult the owner’s manual to determine the proper maintenance interval for a vehicle.

• Inspect hoses and drive belts for cracks, weak spots or other signs of poor condition.

• Check tires when a car has not been driven recently.

• Inflate tires to the pressure recommended by the vehicle manufacturer — not the number molded into the sidewall of the tire.

• Inspect tire treads for proper depth and any signs of uneven wear that could indicate a suspension or alignment problem.

• Check all vehicle fluids, including engine oil, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and brake fluid to make sure they are filled to the proper levels.

• If fluids must be added, be sure to use the type of fluid specified in the owner’s manual.

• If fluids must be added, be sure to use the type of fluid specified in the owner’s manual.

• Check all vehicle fluids, including engine oil, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and brake fluid to make sure they are filled to the proper levels.

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