Owning a car may seem daunting to some, but it’s not as hard as you might think. In fact, owning a car can be downright easy if you know how to follow a few simple maintenance rules. If you’ve always had trouble keeping your car healthy and running smoothly, you may want to make a New Year’s resolution to take better care of your car by following these simple car maintenance resolutions.
As long as you stick to these, your car will be able to go the distance year after year.
Help Your Car Go the Distance with the Basics
First, let’s start with the basics. There are a few simple things you can do to make your car perform better on your everyday commutes. These little checkups will make your drives safer each time you go out. Be sure to do the following:
- Read The Owner’s Manual: Your car’s owner’s manual is there for a reason, so you might as well read it and study up on the ins and outs of your vehicle. Doing this will keep you safe and informed on car maintenance and safety precautions. You can never be too careful, so take some time to read the manual.
- Always Keep Car Fluids Clean and Abundant: While driving, you don’t want to suddenly find important fluids (i.e. transmission fluid, coolant, engine oil, windshield washer, etc) low or completely out. For some of these, like the windshield washer fluid, it could simply mean a dirty windshield that’s hard to see out of, but for others, like engine oil, it could lead to serious problems that could case your car to break down, or worse. Stay on top of these fluids by checking them at least once a month.
- Change Your Windshield Wipers Regularly: If your windshield wipers don’t clean properly, they need to be changed ASAP. Driving with a dirty window can be dangerous in the rain, fog, or bright sunlight, and you should avoid it when you can. As a rule of thumb, change your wipers every three to six months, or as often as needed. A clean window is the safest window to drive with.
- Wash and Wax Your Car Frequently: This one’s simple, but washing and waxing your vehicle can help protect it against paint corrosion. This leaves it looking new and fresh for years and years.
The Big Stuff: Car Maintenance Basics You Can’t Avoid
Don’t let the “Big Stuff” title scare you—these resolutions are still simple and easy to keep, but they should be viewed as completely unavoidable. These basics will essentially ensure that your car stays running for a good, long time. They include:
- Check/Change the Oil: You must check the engine oil regularly to maintain car health. If you notice the oil level dropping between changes, you need to know how to check it to make sure it’s alright or act accordingly if it’s not. To learn how to check your engine oil, go here.
- Check the Engine Air Filter: This piece keeps the air entering the engine nice and clean, which helps the engine run smoothly. Over time, the filter can become dirty, which restricts air flow. Most mechanics recommend replacing the air filter every 12,000-15,000 miles. Your mechanic should be able to check and replace this piece, if needed.
- Always Deal with Problems as Soon as they Arise: Though it can be inconvenient, it is imperative that you deal with all problems as soon as they arise. This means that as soon as you notice a funny smell, a weird sound, a strange feeling as you’re driving, or the like, you should schedule an appointment with your mechanic.
- Check Tire Pressure Regularly: Your tire pressure makes your car run smoothly over streets, roads, and highways, so you want to make sure it’s always in tip top shape. To learn how to adequately check your tire pressure, go here.
- When Replacing Parts, Use Only the Originals: Mixing and matching car parts only spells out disaster. Even if they’re cheaper or you’re advised that a similar model of the part will work just as well, choose not to go with this option. Only use original parts to ensure your vehicle stays working well and lasts long.
- Take Your Car to the Mechanic Regularly: Your mechanic can do all the “heavy lifting” work that you can’t: Oil changes, tire rotation, checking the transmission, etc. You should always take your car to the mechanic as needed, but in addition to this, bring it any once every few months (and every few thousand miles) for a checkup. Chances are things like the oil, air filter, tires, brakes, spark plugs, timing belt, and batteries will need professional attention.
- Follow a Maintenance Schedule: For those who need a little extra structure to keep their car in shape, try making up a maintenance schedule. This should include everything mentioned here on a tight schedule. Since there are so many things that need regular servicing or replacements, a schedule is a great to ensure nothing gets left behind.
Don’t let the needs of your car overwhelm you. The truth is that any car owner can help their car go the distance by practicing these simple resolutions. Your car is a part of your everyday life—treat it right and keep it healthy.
British 4×4 is the number one auto repair shop in Mission Viejo, CA. This company knows all the ins and outs of car maintenance, offering you the services you need to keep you vehicle running well. For years this company has been helping their customers with theirs cars, resulting in thousands of satisfied clients. They can’t wait to help you too! Visit our site to make an appointment!