Chances are your access to your first car began at home, which means your parents took care of its maintenance or reminded you to take it in for service. As soon as you’re on your own, however, driving your car means staying on top of its maintenance, as well.
No matter the car you drive, maintenance is vital. Subaru air filter units or Ford Mustang exhaust systems will need updates and cleaning. The entire body of your car will need regular car washing and tire changing. Maintaining your car can be time-consuming and expensive, but it will save you from sudden breakdowns.
Here are some of the tasks you should do to ensure your car remains at its best shape:
Change your air filter every 12,000 miles
This is one of the easiest car maintenance tasks, so much so that you can do it yourself. Although an easy job, doing it is important. Changing your car’s air filter regularly helps prolong your engine’s life, increases fuel efficiency and helps reduce emissions. Services for changing air filters exist, of course, but doing it yourself will save you half the cost.
Wash your car as often as possible
Your car is exposed to the heat of the sun every single day, as well as tree sap, dead insects and grime and grease. Unfortunately, these things break down your paint, and once that happens, the metal in your car becomes the next target. While failing to wash your car will not result in instant deterioration, the elements your car is often exposed to will corrode your vehicle over time. This, of course, will also decrease its potential resale value.
The question now stands: how often should you wash your car? In all honesty, it depends. The climate, location and pollution are the biggest factors that can determine the car washing frequency. If you live in humid, polluted areas, your car will need washing two to three times a month. Should you be lucky living in an area with less pollution, monthly washing will suffice. Winter season will require you to wash your car more frequently, though, as snow and mud tend to accumulate as your drive along icy roads.
Check your car’s tire pressure
This, perhaps, is the most important part of car maintenance. Make sure your tire is equipped with the right amount of pressure to keep you safe, as well as help you save costs. Experts note that improperly inflated car tires, be it under-inflated or over-inflated, will not function well. Your brakes will not work optimally as a result, and that poses a danger not only to you but on other motorists as well. Improper tire pressure will also increase your chance of a blowout.
Check oil level regularly; top off as necessary
What will your car be without motor oil? Oil is essential to your car’s performance, as its job is to lubricate every moving part in your engine. Without this, your gear will grind and tear, leading it straight to dysfunction. Your motor oil also transfers the heat away from combustion. Topping it off is also crucial — if your car engine does not have enough oil, you’ll risk your car of going kaput.
Owning a car is more than about exciting road trips and convenient rides to work. It’s a responsibility you must uphold, especially since your car, like any other machine, could break down easily once its needs are ignored. The benefits of having a car are endless, so ensure you maintain it regularly.