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The NAPA Spring Clean Checklist

13 March 1998

The NAPA Spring Clean Checklist

                       March 20 is First Day of Season

    ATLANTA, March 13 -- On the first warm days of the year, most
people get their houses in order with a spring cleaning.  The National
Automotive Parts Association (NAPA) recommends that you do the same for your
car to keep it running smoothly and safely into the warmer months.  Below is a
checklist compiled by NAPA that is relatively inexpensive and can be completed
by an automotive technician in a short time.

    The NAPA Spring Clean Checklist(TM)
    1.  Cleanliness Check.  Check the radiator and the cowl (area on your hood
        just ahead of the windshield) for accumulated debris from winter.
        Remove any leaves or trash  so that air intakes are clean and fresh.
    2.  Cooling System Check.  Have your cooling system analyzed, including a
        check of your antifreeze.  Fresh antifreeze is very vivid in color
        (usually bright green or blue), whereas dirty antifreeze looks dull.
        If the thermostat in your cooling system isn't operating properly,
        your engine can run too hot or cold, causing either your gas mileage
        to decrease, or worse, your engine to overheat.
    3.  Air Conditioning Check.  Spring is the perfect time to have your air
        conditioning evaluated.  In addition to diagnosing and correcting any
        problems before hot weather sets in, it is usually less expensive and
        easier to get an appointment to get it fixed in the spring.
    4.  Belts and Hoses Check.  In the winter, your belts and hoses take a lot
        of abuse with snow, salt and sand.  They should be checked each spring
        to ensure they'll endure the summer's temperatures.
    5.  Wiper Blade Check.  Your wipers worked hard all winter getting rid of
        dirt and debris on your windshield.  Replacing them now means that you
        can drive with confidence during "April Showers."

    NAPA also offers the following tips to help you find an honest repair shop
for your spring cleaning:

    --  Look for the blue-and-white ASE seal and ask if the technicians are
        certified in  the repair specialty you need;
    --  Make sure the shop offers a warranty on both parts and labor;
    --  Check the business' reputation with the Better Business Bureau;
    --  Ask for a list of customer references, as you would for a physician.

SOURCE  National Automotive Parts Association