Extra-large TVs, gaming computers, designer handbags—tax refunds sometimes inspire people to invest in non-essential things. These things are fun, but they have a way of falling out of style or losing our interest within a few months. When invested well, though, your tax refund check can provide benefits for many years. Wondering what to do with your tax refund this year? Tap into the long-term benefits of these important car services.
For many drivers, the end of winter means swapping winter tires for regular tires. For others, it means getting their tires ready for road trip season! Whether you’re switching back to regular tires or considering replacing your old ones—spring is a great opportunity to gauge your tires’ condition. If tire tread is worn or damaged, it could be a great time to buy new tires.
The advantages of driving on new tires include:
- Increased safety
- Better fuel efficiency
- Improved traction
- A more comfortable driving experience
You’ll have to replace your tires eventually, so why not do it when you have some extra cash? Once your new tires hit the road, you’ll be thanking yourself for using your refund so wisely.
2. Brake Pads
People tend to “ride” their brakes more in the winter than in the summer. That means they keep a foot on the brake pedal, applying slight pressure. Riding the brakes is common during seasons when drivers are constantly bracing for tricky road conditions brought on by bad weather.
Combined with stop and go traffic, riding the brakes can put real wear and tear on your car’s brake pads. (If you drove in the snow this winter, you should also consider the damage that road salt can have on your brake lines.)
Responsive braking and safe driving go hand in hand. When that tax refund comes in, take advantage of it and make sure your brake pads are up to the challenge of the year ahead—especially if they've been making noise. Brake pads are one of those "snowball" repairs. If they're not inspected or replaced at the right time, they could cause far more damage than you ever imagined. A simple brake pad replacement is much cheaper than a full brake repair.
3. Wheel Alignment
Depending on where you live and how you drive, a wheel alignment might be in order. Winter weather, potholes, and bumpy roads can be rough on even brand new cars.
Poor wheel alignment literally means that your tires aren’t all pointing in the same direction, leading to shoddy vehicle handling which can be dangerous. On top of enjoying a safer ride, wheel alignment benefits can include:
- Longer lasting tires
- More precise steering
- A smoother driving experience
- Better fuel efficiency
- Fewer auto repairs
Proper alignment ensures optimal driveability, balanced tire wear, and above all—your safety on the road. That's what we like to call a worthy investment.
4. Fluid Flush or Refill
Ever notice how dry your skin gets during the cold? It can get that way when you turn on the heat, too.
Just as extreme changes in temperature can dry out your skin, they can also dry out your car's fluids. A thorough courtesy vehicle check at your local Firestone Complete Auto Care can help you gauge which vehicle fluids need attention. These fluids might include:
- Transmission Fluid: Your transmission turns all of the motion in your engine into something that gets and keeps your car going. Transmission fluid lubricates all the moving parts inside the transmission. A transmission fluid check and flush helps ensure the transmission stays cool and lubricated.
- Radiator Fluid: Just like your air conditioning refrigerant or freon keeps you from overheating in your car, radiator fluid helps keep your engine from overheating. Run low and you risk overheating your engine and getting stranded on the side of the road.
- Windshield Wiper Fluid: Clearing salt and slush from your windshield in winter can severely deplete your windshield washer fluid. You can replenish this yourself, but let the technicians at Firestone Complete Auto Care do it and they'll also carefully examine your windshield wipers for wear and tear. It’s a twofer!
Treat Yourself to Better Car Care
If you’ve been wondering what to do with your tax refund, wonder no longer! These four vehicle services are a lasting investment.
You don't have to wait for your tax refund to take care of your car concerns, though. Important services and repairs can be taken care of with the Firestone Credit Card. You can get the service you need with promotional financing and up to six months interest-free!*
*DEFERRED INTEREST IF PAID IN FULL WITHIN 6 MONTHS*
$149 MINIMUM PURCHASE REQUIRED. Interest will be charged to your account from the purchase date if the purchase balance is not paid in full within 6 months or if you make a late payment. MINIMUM MONTHLY PAYMENTS REQUIRED. APR: 28.8%. Minimum Finance Charge: $2.00. Terms are subject to change. Learn more>