How to Create a Car Maintenance Routine for All Year Round

The maintenance requirements of your car change with the seasons. In the colder months, antifreeze protection, tyre safety and engine and battery health take precedence, while at warmer times of the year, things like visibility, coolant and air-con performance may be more of a priority.

If you want to keep your car looking and running its best, a year-round maintenance routine can help safeguard its performance and appearance. By knowing when and how to maintain your car, and what products to use, it will stay protected whatever the weather throws your way.

In this guide, we’re here to help you create a car maintenance routine that’s suitable all year round. Gathering products from across all four Holts brands – including Holts, Redex, Prestone and Simoniz – we’ll show you how to take care of your car from season to season.

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Spring Car Maintenance

mechanic looking under the bonnet

Spring brings a mixed bag of weather and variable driving conditions, so it’s an important time to stay on top of maintaining your car. And let’s not forget, the big spring clean applies to your car, too, so it’s the ideal time to break out the pressure washer, shampoo and wax and show your motor some love.

Let’s take a closer look at the maintenance tasks and products we’d recommend for spring.

Maintenance and Checks

Now that winter is out the way, you may be more in the mood to tackle those DIY maintenance tasks around your car.

For example, if winter took its toll on your exhaust, you can repair it yourself with the help of Holts Gun Gum. Our exhaust repair solution is permanent and provides a gas-tight seal, so there’s no need to worry about forking out for expensive replacement parts.

Of course, it’s also important to keep up with those safety and fluid-level checks, including the tyres, oil, and coolant/antifreeze. The Prestone Coolant/Antifreeze Tester is ideal for quickly testing the efficacy of your coolant, so you can be sure your engine is adequately protected ahead of the new season of driving. Need fresh fluid? Top your system up with Prestone Ready to Use Coolant/Antifreeze for outstanding year-round performance.

Spring is a great time to adopt new maintenance habits, too, so why not improve your car’s long-term engine health with Redex? A regular shot of petrol or diesel Redex Fuel System Cleaner will clear your car’s fuel injectors and guarantee peak performance throughout the year.

Cleaning and Car Care

When it comes to spring cleaning, Simoniz has everything you need to take care of your car inside and out. Whether it’s cleaning the paintwork or freshening up the interior, kit yourself out with all the essentials that will keep your car looking good through spring and beyond.

With winter behind us, now is the ideal time to clean your car’s wheels and tyres, a task you can complete with ease thanks to Simoniz Iron Active Wheel Cleaner. Spring is also the time to apply a fresh coat of wax to your car’s paintwork, which will help keep it protected right through to autumn.

Summer Car Maintenance

cleaning the windscreen whilst driving

Summer car maintenance is all about maintaining good habits, checking fluids, and staying on top of your visibility at the wheel. And because you might be driving more in the summer – and on longer journeys – having the right products to help you when things go wrong is essential.

Maintenance Checks

Making sure your car is protected against extreme heat is important in the summer. So, as with spring, we’d recommend using the Prestone Coolant/Antifreeze Tester to check the temperature protection of your coolant.

Of course, one of the most important things to get right in summer is to make sure your car is always topped up with high-performance screen wash. Prestone’s Max Visibility Summer Screen Wash is specially formulated to remove tree sap, bird droppings and other deposits, while also leaving a streak-free finish that will safeguard against dangerous sun dazzle.

Elsewhere, you’ll want to have your air conditioning system serviced and recharged at the start of summer to keep you cool out on the road. And as for those summer daytrips and holidays, make sure you carry a can of Holts Tyreweld in your glovebox in case of unexpected punctures – because no one wants their summer holiday interrupted by a flat tyre.

Cleaning and Car Care

You’ll want to clean your car at least fortnightly in summer, as dust, dirt, tree sap and dead insects can quickly ruin the finish of your paintwork. In a rush? Try the Waterless Wash and Wax system, and use Insect & Bird Dropping Remover to quickly lift stubborn stains.

As well as keeping the exterior windscreen clear with a high-performance screen wash, you’ll also want to do the same on the inside. Messy marks and fingerprints on interior glass can cause dangerous sun dazzle any time of year, but especially in the summer when you’re more likely to be commuting in full sun. Use Simoniz Clear Vision Glass Cleaner to rapidly remove grease, smears and marks from glass surfaces and reveal a clean, streak-free finish.

Autumn Car Maintenance

fallen leaves covering car in autumn

Like spring, autumn brings a mixed bag of driving conditions, so you need to cover all the bases when it comes to maintaining your car. This is also the ideal time to start thinking about getting your car winter-ready, with some essential maintenance jobs you can do to get ahead of the bad weather.

Maintenance Checks

With summer out of the way and winter right around the corner, autumn is a great time to service your car’s cooling system and make sure it’s in tip-top condition.

If you’re reasonably confident working on your car, we’d recommend flushing the cooling system and refilling it with a high-performance coolant/antifreeze. Prestone Professional Cooling System Flush helps to deliver an intensive clean for the radiator, while Professional Coolant/Antifreeze guarantees maximum protection against the approaching cold of winter.

Elsewhere, it’s important to give your car’s tyres regular checks in the autumn. How is the tread depth? Are they inflated to the correct pressure? And are there any signs of damage? Remember, autumn can bring tricky driving conditions thanks to wet leaves and increased rainfall, so your tyres need to be properly maintained to cope with hazardous surfaces.

Is your MOT due in autumn? To give yourself the best chance of passing, use Redex Super-Fast Emissions Reducer to clean up those exhaust fumes and ensure that high emissions don’t cost you a pass mark on the test.

Cleaning and Car Care

With more mud, water and wet leaves on the road, autumn can take its toll on your car’s appearance, so you might find you need to wash your car more often as we head into the colder months of the year.

As well as washing and cleaning your car more regularly, you’ll all also want to apply a fresh coat of wax. Generally, we recommend applying a minimum of two coats of wax to your car per year to ensure maximum protection for the paintwork. Autumn is a great time to refresh your wax layer, so your car is ready for whatever winter throws your way.

What’s more, if your car has picked up any light scratches or dents, autumn is the time to repair and fix them. It’s important to do this before winter to give yourself the best chance of avoiding further damage from rust and corrosion.

With the Simoniz Paint and Maintenance range, you have everything you need to fix and repair your car’s paintwork. And with the Holts Paint Match Pro range, you’re guaranteed a like-for-like colour match when respraying your car’s paintwork.

Winter Car Maintenance

replacing car battery
Winter is the toughest season for your car, so it’s vital that you stay on top of maintenance and upkeep. And even though you may not feel like washing your car when it’s cold and dark, cleaning is just as important as it is at other times of year.

Maintenance Checks

In the winter months, your engine has to work harder than at any other time of year. That’s because cold starts are particularly energy-intensive, putting enormous pressure on moving parts under the bonnet.

When winter hits, your car should be serviced and ready for the new season of driving. If you’re yet to replace the oil, use the Redex Oil Finder to quickly find the ideal oil for your car. We’d recommend a high-performance fully synthetic oil to ensure maximum protection against friction and wear.

If your car is prone to starting issues in cold weather, Bradex Easy Start is the product you need. Applied to the air intake during start up, the product makes the fuel/air mix more combustible, so your engine ignites faster. It also helps with lubrication, making those cold starts a little less hard on your car.

Elsewhere, make sure you’re using a high-quality winter-approved screen wash. Prestone Max Visibility Winter Screen Wash provides outstanding cleaning performance even in freezing conditions. And for those frosty mornings, always carry a bottle of Prestone Rapid De-Icer to safely melt stubborn ice and snow on your car’s windscreen.

Another area of your car that’s important to check in the winter months is the battery. Batteries may be down on power when it’s cold, so you should check the charge at the start of the season and monitor it every few weeks. If it’s down slightly at the start of winter, take it to a mechanic who should be able to advise on the best course of action.

Cleaning and Car Care

Cleaning your car through the winter is important in preventing rust and corrosion. And with an onslaught of muddy boots and soggy dogs in and out of your car, you’ll need to clean the interior regularly too to prevent stains, dirt, and bad odours.

In winter, we’d recommend washing your car at least once a fortnight. Use a pressure washer to remove dirt and salt from the paintwork, and give the undercarriage a blast too to keep corrosion at bay. Simoniz Multi-Use Pressure Washer Fluid is perfect for removing stubborn dirt while ensuring an intensive all-round clean.

In the cabin, stay on top of vacuuming and cleaning the interior. Simoniz Upholstery & Carpet Cleaner is great for cleaning up after muddy kids, while the Car Sanitiser helps to eliminate odours caused by dirt and damp.

Looking after your car doesn’t have to be a chore. With a year-round maintenance plan, you can stay on top of those essential jobs and make sure your car always looks, feels, and performs at its best. For more information about Holts and our partner brands, visit our homepage.

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