You hear a lot about protecting your car’s exterior–its paint job, its tires, and its chrome finish. But what about protecting the interior of your car? There are several different things you can do to protect your car and its interior from sunlight, heat, and other issues. The last thing you want is your car’s interior being damaged and decreasing the entire value of your vehicle.
Protecting Your Dashboard
The bright sunlight that streams in through your windshield can damage the material of your dashboard. It can cause it to fade and, if the dashboard is under hot sunlight for too long, it can actually start to crack or warp. To protect your dashboard, there are a few things you can do. You can put up a sunlight blocking cardboard insert each time you park in the sun. These sun blockers will not only keep the sun off your dashboard but they will also keep your car from heating up. Another option is to buy a dashboard cover made from cloth. It attaches at each corner and has cut outs for vents and other areas.
Protecting Your Seats
In addition to protecting your dashboard, you’ll also want to protect your seats. Sunlight can also fade the fabric, so you’ll want to include a dashboard sun blocker. You’ll also want to make certain that you don’t leave anything on the seats of your car that could melt. For example, if your kids happen to leave a few crayons on the seat of your car during the hot afternoon, you may find that they’ve melted onto the fabric. The same goes for chocolate bars and anything else that could melt.
Clean Out Your Car Regularly
Besides keeping your car looking nice, it’ll also help protect your interior. You never know what might be in those left over fast food bags. Some ketchup could leak out, for example, or a cup you thought was empty may have just enough drink left it in to make a mess. Get rid of any trash in your car to make sure nothing like that happens.
Use Protective Floor Mats
Some cars have floor mats you can remove to clean. These plastic mats will keep your car’s floors from getting mud and dirt all over them, but you do need to remember to clean them occasionally and make sure they are properly in place. Some of them aren’t secured to the floor by any method (especially the ones for the back seats). Every now and then, pull them out, shake them off (or wipe them off if need be) and reposition them.
Clean Out The Trunk
Just like the inside of your car, you also need to clean out your trunk every now and again. There’s always the chance you may have forgotten a bag of groceries or that something has spilled in your trunk. Keeping it cleaned out will not only let you see if you’ve forgotten something in but also give you the chance to make certain nothing has spilled or come open.
Suppose you live in an area where extreme heat is common – like here in the Phoenix, Tempe and Chandler, Arizona area. You only have to glance around to see the aftermath. Mailboxes are melting, heat-related illnesses are more common, and roadways are buckling. So just imagine what all that heat is doing to your car. In most owners manuals the manufacturer gives two sets of vehicle maintenance requirements, normal and “severe service” conditions.
I’m often asked questions about the cooling system, the system that cools your engine and keeps it at the proper operating temperature. I like to divide the topic into two areas. First, the coolant itself, and second, the parts that make up the cooling system. The coolant is the mix of water and antifreeze that circulates through the engine to draw off heat.