Your car is probably one of the most expensive things you’ll buy, so it’s important to take care of it as best you can. A well-kept car will run better, keep you safer, and be less likely to break down and cost you time, money, and even more trouble.
Photo by Taras Makarenko: https://www.pexels.com/photo/cars-ahead-on-road-593172/
Even if your car is new and you don’t drive it very far, it’s important to keep it in good shape: A car is a complicated piece of machinery that needs to be taken care of and driven often to stay in good shape. Some jobs are best left to professionals, but there are some simple things you can and should do at home, like making sure you have the right car and truck insurance. Here are some of our best tips for taking care of your car.
Keep It Clean And Tidy
Even though it’s nice to drive around in a clean car, there are more practical reasons to get out the bucket and sponge.
You have to clean your car’s licence plates, lights, door mirrors, and windows by law. Number plates that are dirty are harder to read. Lights and mirrors that are dirty don’t work as well, and dirty windows can block your view.
It’s also important to clean and organise the inside of your car. If there is dirt and grime around the buttons and knobs, they might not work right. Litter could get in the way of the pedals, shifter, and handbrake. Having trash stuck under the brake pedal is especially dangerous and can even cause accidents.
Look After Fluid Levels
Oil, coolant, brake fluid, and power steering fluid are just some of the fluids that cars need to run well. You can easily check the fluid levels yourself.
In the past, all cars had a dipstick in the engine bay that let you see how much oil was in the car. Many new cars don’t have dipsticks anymore. Instead, the computer in the car keeps track of the level and shows it on the dashboard. Check the owner’s manual that came with your car to see if this is true.
Look After The Windows
Keep your car’s windscreen clean and free of cracks so you can always see well. It is very important to keep the windscreen washer fluid full and the wiper blades clean.
You should also look to see if your wiper blades are broken. Lift them off the windscreen and run your finger along the blade. If it feels spiky, it needs replacing. Blades can be bought at any auto parts store and are easy to put on. (Just make sure you get the right size.)
The windscreen should be fixed right away if it has any chips or cracks. Even small problems can quickly grow into big ones. Your car will fail its MOT if the cracks are too big or in a certain spot on the windscreen.
Look After Your Tyres
It’s important to keep the right amount of air in your car’s tyres. Low pressure makes your car use more gas and changes the way it drives, which could be dangerous. When you open the driver’s door of your car, you’ll see a panel on the inside edge that tells you how much air to put in the front and back tyres.
Look After The Battery
When you turn off the car’s ignition, any electrical equipment that hasn’t been turned off, like the lights or stereo, goes into “standby” mode so it will turn on automatically the next time you start the car. This standby mode uses a little bit of power from the battery, so if the car isn’t used for a long time afterwards, the battery may die.
Drive Your Car Often
A car’s condition gets worse if it isn’t driven often, just like people do if they don’t work out. Keeping your car fit and healthy is as easy as driving it. You should go for a drive of about 20 miles at least once every two weeks, and you should make sure to take some faster roads. That will get the fluids in the car moving, warm up the engine, and work any flat spots out of the tires.
Get Your Car Serviced
By far, the best way to keep your car in good shape is to have a qualified mechanic work on it regularly and do it right. When it’s time for a service, many cars will show you a message on the dashboard. If you’re not sure when your car needs its next service, check its manual or service record.