Protecting Your Car During Smokey Weather & Extreme Heat

Protecting Your Car During Smokey Weather and Extreme Heat

When caught in a high heat and smokey weather, particles in the air as a result of wildfires can adversely affect your car. In case you didn’t know, your car works extra hard during those periods just to keep running and normal maintenance might not cut it.

It is therefore wise that you look for ways to properly take care of your car during the fire season so that it doesn’t get damaged.

Keeping Your Car in Good Condition When in Smokey Weather and High Heat

Cabin filter

The function of the cabin filter is to keep the air inside your vehicle clean. It filters out pollutants such as smoke, allergens, pollen, and ash.

So if during or after a smokey weather or extreme heat, you observe that your car has a certain smell that can be likened to a campfire type of smell then it is advised that you change your cabin filter.

Another thing that you can do to maintain fresh air in your car is to run your heat and air-conditioning on recirculate. This helps avoid the case of your vehicle taking in ash, sediment, or smoke from outside especially if there has been a wild fire.

Oil & Fluids

During extreme heat, oil and fluids in your car work overtime. So if you normally change your oil on a mileage or you have another schedule for it that is suitable for you, but you see that you have driven the car a lot during smokey weather or on days when the heat was really high, it is advised that you change the oil sooner than what would normally have been the case.

Just as we have likened the air filter to a respiratory organ, consider the oil to be like the blood of your car engine. Oil in the car works extra during smokey weather or high heat in order to reduce friction and ensure that the engine parts do not wear down.

Tiny smoke particles in the atmosphere can distort the viscosity of the oil, making it more difficult for it to properly lubricate your engine. So, you see the need to change it more often than the schedule that you had previously drawn up for it.

Apart from oil, there are other fluids that help your car to function properly that you also have to take a look at, for instance coolants. A coolant is a combination of water and antifreeze in your radiator whose function is to prevent your vehicle from overheating.

It is proper to change this every two years, but you have to ensure that you are topping it up properly during smokey weather or high heat.

Also remember that a lot of cars require that their brake and transmission fluids be changed every 50,000 miles. You also have to top these up regularly to ensure that your car is in the best shape.

You must not do all these yourself, you can get a professional technician to handle the changing and the topping up of these fluids.


Do not neglect your tires. The heat wave can cause uneven air pressure increase and lead to excess inflation. This should not come as a surprise to you as during extreme cold weather, air molecules shrink and this can cause your tires to deflate.

You can get a professional to check your tire pressure. In addition to checking your tire pressure, also ask the professional to properly inspect your tire for rubber and tire damage. This is essential because during extreme hot weather, your tires become more sensitive and are prone to shredding.

Air Filter

Just imagine that you are in a smokey environment, the first thing that you will do is to cover your nose with a wet cloth or any piece of clothing you can lay your hand on. Then imagine how the air filter of your car’s engine is doing when in a smokey weather.

The air filters reduces the work load for your car engine and when in a smokey weather, you have to do your best to always change it when required.

Don’t worry, air filters are not that expensive to change and it is important that you change them when required, otherwise you risk damage to your engine which will cost you more time and resources.

You can check for the condition of the air filter yourself or you can get a professional technician to check it for you. If the air filter is white or light gray then there is no need to worry.

However, if upon checking your air filter you discover that it is dark gray or caked with sediment then you have to change it.


If there has been a wild fire, soot, ash and pollution are quite normal and if you have been driving through it, your car is really working hard. It is recommended that you get a professional to properly wipe down your radiator.

Wash Your Car

Finally, is the very basic but important tip to wash your car. If you can park your car in the garage and keep it safe from outdoor smoke then that’s okay. But if that is not the case, ensure that you regularly wash your car with lukewarm water.

This is so that carbon particles do not bake into your car’s paint coat. Do not neglect this as ash and smoke in the atmosphere can cause your car paint to deteriorate at a very fast rate and you wouldn’t want that. So if in a smokey weather, always remember to wash your car.


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