Money Talks: 5 Tips to Keep Your Car Cool This Summer

Our nation has already been enduring record heat this summer, and it's not over yet.

If you're planning a driving vacation this summer, remember that summer heat is not just tough on's tough on your car, too.

Here are five tips to avoid waiting on the side of the road due to a heat-related breakdown.

First, your radiator. Make sure there's adequate coolant. And if it hasn't been flushed in a couple of years, do it before you hit the road.

But the coolant's only as good as the hoses it flows through. Look for leaks, cracks, peeling or separation.

Then check your battery. Terminals clean? Adequate water? Most auto parts stores will check it out for free.

When was the last time your air conditioner was serviced? It's super-important for summer driving and cheap to check. Put a thermometer in the vent and see how cool the air is getting.

And keep an eye on the temperature gauge. If you get in the red, you'll have to stop immediately or risk blowing your engine.

But there's one thing you can try in an emergency. Turn your air conditioning off and your heater on full-blast.

That won't help you, but may cool down your car until you can get somewhere for help.

Those are six quick tips, but I have several more. They're waiting for you right here at