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Cars are expensive. Even if you buy a used car, routine maintenance expenses still come with owning a vehicle. One way to minimize these costs is to regularly perform essential car maintenance tasks. This blog post will discuss five simple things you can do to maintain your car and keep it running smoothly. While this is not an exhaustive list, it highlights some of the most important (and often overlooked) items that must be checked and serviced regularly.
Give It A Regular Wash
You should always keep your car clean for both aesthetic and practical reasons. A good wash will remove any dirt, grime, or salt that has built up on the surface of your car. This is especially important in the winter when road conditions can be particularly harsh.
Check The Battery Power And Cables
Your car’s battery must always be in good working condition. To ensure it is, you should regularly check the power and cables for cleanliness and corrosion. If you notice any problems, take your car to a mechanic immediately to fix the issue.
Replace Any Old Air Filters
The air filter’s primary purpose is to clean the air entering your car’s engine. Unfortunately, over time it becomes clogged with dirt and debris, reducing your engine’s efficiency and causing wasted fuel. To prevent this, check your air filter regularly and replace it as needed.
Take A Look At The Tires
The condition of your tires can influence the performance of your car. They should have the correct air pressure and show no cracks or bald spots. If you spot any problems, bring your car to a tire professional to get it repaired.
Check The Fluids
There are several fluids your vehicle needs to run, like engine oil, windshield washer fluid, grease, brake fluid, and power steering fluid. Some engines use other fluids, too, such as diesel exhaust after treatment. Every one of these liquids has a way that you can check the level, so you always know how much is in there.
In addition, they also have a mechanism to test how clean the fluid is. You can check the motor oil and transmission fluids levels with dipsticks inside the engine compartment. The sticks should be marked with hot and cold indicators so you will know where levels should be if the engine is hot (when the car is running) or cold. Check these regularly; not doing so can void your warranty or cause premature engine failure.
The windshield washer fluid is usually kept in a reservoir that you can see when you open the hood. You can tell how full it is by looking at the spout or container and seeing the fluid level. If you’re unsure, adding more rather than less is better.
The brake fluid reservoir is located on top of the brake master cylinder, and it’s easy to check the level. You shouldn’t have a problem overfilling it, but you should still check regularly to ensure enough fluid.
More specifically, grease is used in the steering system of some cars. You should check these levels monthly and add more grease to keep your car running smoothly.
Most cars have a power steering fluid reservoir located in the engine compartment. You can check the level by looking at the dipstick. If it’s low, add more fluid until it reaches the proper level.
Don’t Ignore Your Check Engine Light
A lit check engine light can indicate various issues, from a loose gas cap to something more severe like a broken catalytic converter. If this light appears, you should have the problem diagnosed and repaired ASAP. Not tending to the issue could result in costlier repairs in the future.
These are just a few of the most important things you should do to maintain your car. By following these tips, you can help keep your car running smoothly for years to come and save money on repairs in the long run.