More Ways You Can Extend Your Car’s Life

Clean Your Car Out

People tend to put things into their trunk and forget that it is there. This decreases your fuel economy if there is a lot of trash in it that weighs a lot. You should also vacuum your car and keep spills or food picked up. You should also take the time to clean and protect your dash, seats, and other areas within your car. Washing the exterior of your car often is also a great idea. Not only will these things keep your car looking nice enough for you to want to drive it, you will be extending the life of your paint job, decrease your new car depreciation, and ensuring that no cracks form on the dash, seats, or doors.

Drive Carefully

oil-changeThis may seem strange, but one of the best maintenance things you can do for your vehicle is to drive carefully. This means you should try to avoid the rush. When your vehicle is cold, let it warm up for at least 30 seconds before you put it into gear. Doing so will ensure that the motor is well lubricated with oil before you attempt to drive it. You should also drive your vehicle in a way that does not strain the motor and avoid situations where you may have to stop suddenly if at all possible. This does not mean drive 30mph, but it does mean take it easy. Instead of gunning your vehicle at the stop light, take off calmly. Instead of trying to be the fastest car on the interstate, drive casually. You will get there just as quick and your car will be happier to have taken you there.

Tires get Tired, Too

Check your vehicle’s tire pressure often. Make sure that there is not a lot of wear on one side of the tire occasionally. If you have a tire that is worn more on the inside than it should be, it could mean that your car is not aligned properly. If it is not aligned, you could be risking the health of your car. Rotating tires can help you out, but it is not necessarily a bad idea to have someone check it to make sure everything is lined up the way it should be. Otherwise, you are potentially sacrificing a lot of unnecessary gas and you could end up with a larger problem to deal with later on.

Fix Issues as They Come

If you can afford your car, you can afford to maintain it properly, but it is still something that has a lot of little parts and pieces under the hood. Things will malfunction. When they do, replace them, even if it is something as small as a fuel filter. By doing so, you are helping your vehicle to take you anywhere you need to go. This also means you should listen to your vehicle rather than simply drive it with the radio blaring loudly. Often a vehicle will give you warning signs that a part is about to go south. It could be something as simple as a rattle or a shimmy. It could be a loud ticking noise or a squeal. If at any time you hear a noise that is not familiar, you should start looking for a potential problem and try to catch it before it leaves you stranded.

Basic Maintenance to Prolong the Life of Your Car

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We depend on our vehicles to get us through our everyday life. If you do not think that you depend on yours, simply imagine how it will be if your vehicle breaks down. How will you get the kids if they are sick at school? How will you get to the grocery store when you run out of milk, but need some for tonight’s dinner? How will you take your girlfriend out on a date or your parent’s to their next doctor appointment? Most of all, how will you get to and from work on a daily basis? Yes, you may have friends that can help you out some, but no one wants the full responsibility of transporting you. Instead of waiting until you find out what being car-less is all about, why not take care of the basic maintenance to prolong the life of your car, right from the start of having your own vehicle? Doing so will not guarantee a car that will never have issues, but it should make the issues happen a little less often, because little issues will not become major ones.

Keep Your Fluids Clean

Whether you have a brand new vehicle or an old beater, one of the best things you can do for it is to check the fluids often. You should also change the oil every few hundred miles to ensure that the inside of your motor has all of the lubrication that it needs while running you around town. As oil travels through the motor, it becomes thin and discolored. The discoloration can lead to deposits that are left inside the motor and the thinner the oil is, the harder your motor will have to work. In both cases, it is bad news for your motor and your fuel economy. It is the same way with transmission fluids and clutch fluids. Brake fluid and power steering fluid are also important if you want the vehicle to drive the way it did when it was new.

Give Your Car a Doctor Appointment

Even if you change the fluids and filters often, there are still tiny things that can go wrong with your vehicle. Therefore, you should have your vehicle checked out and serviced by a professional at regular intervals. Most vehicle owner manuals will tell you how often you should give it a checkup. During this, your air filters will be replaced as needed, tires can be rotated, your brakes can be checked or changed as needed, and more. Your manufacturer can also hook your vehicle to a computer that may give you an insight into potential issues before they become an issue.

Keep an Eye On Your Belts

A timing belt is a belt that controls many aspects of your motor. They, like all other belts under your vehicle’s hood, can get worn out over time. Instead of waiting until your vehicle’s motor starts ticking, you should check it often to make sure it is not getting worn. Belts that are cracked, unbendable, and look rough, should be changed. Otherwise, if you are driving down the road and your vehicle leaves you stranded, it could mean a new motor, new alternator, water pumps, and more.