We all know that cars are machines. They need regular maintenance if you don’t want to find yourself standing by the roadside because your car broke down. More importantly, regular car maintenance increases the lifespan of your vehicle while reducing the cost of repair. Unfortunately, not all drivers are well-versed in how to take proper care of their vehicles. Of course, having a trusted mechanic is an absolute must. But you shouldn’t always rely on someone when you can do it yourself. Below are some basic maintenance tips that every responsible car owner should know.
Read the owner’s manual.
OK, so this doesn’t sound much like a car maintenance tip. But it is an important step that every driver should take before attempting to service their car – whether by themselves or by hiring a professional.
Your car’s manual is a treasure trove of information on the basic maintenance that your vehicle needs and how to do it. In it, you’ll find what the proper air pressure is for your tires. It also contains how often you should change your oil and when to replace your air filter. Manuals also generally contain the maintenance schedule for your vehicle which should help you determine when the car needs to be serviced in a collision repair center.
Check your tires regularly.
Your tires play an important role in the health and safety of your car. They also ensure the efficiency of your car’s performance.
Look for worn treads as these can lessen the tires’ grip on the road. Proper air pressure is not just for preventing a flat. It also helps make your car run more efficiently by lowering fuel consumption. Moreover, incorrect tire pressure can wear out your tires faster. In short, maintaining the right air pressure can help you save quite a bit of money.
Change the oil.
Another thing you can do to make sure that your car runs smoothly and efficiently is to check the oil levels and change the oil when needed.
The oil serves as a lubricant to prevent parts of your engine from grinding into each other and damaging the engine. However, oil can leave contaminants that can accumulate and cause friction when they come into contact with parts. Check your manual to find out what type of oil to use and how often you need to change it.
Check all other fluids.
The oil isn’t the only fluid in your car that needs checking. Car experts state that you should also take the time to inspect your brake fluid, transmission fluids, coolant, and even the windshield washer fluid.
Inspect the belts and hoses.
While you’re already looking under the hood and inspecting the fluid levels, you should also take the time to check the condition of the belts and hoses. Look for cracks, bulges, or glazing. Check the belt if there are already chunks missing. These parts are essential to keep your engine running smoothly. Replacing the belts and hoses as quickly as possible can prevent engine damage.
Take note that you should also have your car undergo a car diagnostic test near you once a year. Doing car maintenance can help prolong your car’s life. But it won’t help you uncover minor problems that can’t be seen or heard.
Author information: Robert Hall is the marketing manager at Hyperion Collision Center. During the past 5 years, he has been expressing his passion for the automotive industry by sharing tips for a highly targeted audience. His role is substantial in contributing to a variety of auto blogs for car enthusiasts and growing their audience.