Southern California Isn’t Often Prone to Extremes But Care Should Still Be Taken
The care vehicles require during the winter months in Southern California isn’t as extreme as the care vehicles in colder parts of the country merit, but safety and effectiveness still demand steps be taken.
For automotive service providers at dealerships and service facilities, it’s essential to communicate to your customers what that care should be in a way that goes beyond making a sale.
“When you talk about winterizing your vehicle, customers are usually skeptical, especially in this part of the country,” said SCL Automotive Expert Don Parker, who holds 30 years of automotive industry experience. “Just as with anything else, it’s important to explain the need.” When you consider how our vehicles have been baking in the California sun all summer then all of a sudden we’re subject to cold snaps and rain, those extremes do have an impact on how our cars operate.
- CHANGE WIPER BLADES
The integrity of the rubber on wiper blades, especially after months in the sun with little to no use, often declines. In winter, when rains are more frequent, customers could find themselves in a downpour with ineffective blades. According to Parker, it’s critical for customers to replace their blades and possibly apply a rain repellent to their windshield so they can be prepared.
- CHECK THE BATTERY
When the temperature starts dropping below 50 degrees at night, that can easily kill a car battery, Parker said. When customers come in for regularly scheduled service, talk to them about preemptively checking their battery and, if necessary, purchasing a new one so they can start off the season without risk of failure. Having a vehicle that doesn’t start first thing in the morning when they’re on their way to work can equate to an added headache of looking for someone with jumper cables, paying for a tow or even filing an insurance claim.
- SERVICE THE TIRES
The first rain of the year can lead to especially slick roads since months of grime and oil have accumulated and are just now being washed away. If the tread on your customer’s tires isn’t adequate that can be a high risk, especially in southern California traffic where breaking fast can lead to accidents. Tire pressure is also important, as it drops when temperatures decrease. Those drops in pressure lead to an increased rate of blowouts and a decrease in fuel efficiency. For adequate tire pressure recommendations, always check the owner’s manuals of each specific car model.
There are definitely other recommendations you can give your customers, like the importance of a good wax to protect the paint or a comprehensive service to ensure the engine is running properly on cold mornings, but the essentials listed above are the highest priority when it comes to safety and effectiveness of the vehicle.
“There will always be opportunities to upsell your clients on services that help their vehicles run more efficiently or for longer, but the important thing this time of year is to keep them safe,” Parker said. “If you show them it’s not always about making a sale, they are more likely to remember you when they are in the market for more comprehensive service or – even better – for a new vehicle.”
Contact an SCL Consultant today
In a wide range of industrial sectors, SCL is committed to being the number one logistics and solutions provider for the products that protect and optimize the machines that keep our country moving. For more information on how we help automotive partners with services including monitoring delivery or managing inventory, contact an SCL expert today.