Owning a car has a lot of benefits. You can go anywhere you want, anytime you want to, and sometimes just driving around in circles can help take things off your mind. Taking your car to work also saves you time because you don’t need to wait for the next bus or cab anymore. You might not notice it, but you probably use your car more than any other possession you have.
Cars are subject to wear and tear because of high usage combined with facing the harsh effects of the environment daily. As such, you must take good care of your car if you want to prolong its life.
Keeping your car well-maintained can be pricey, but the cost is nothing compared to what you will pay in repairs if ever it gets damaged due to negligence. Do yourself a favor and do these easy steps to take better care of your car:
1. Make a habit of cleaning the inside and outside of your vehicle.
Depends on how strict you are with other people getting in your car, the chances of it accumulating dirt can be low to high. Some people forbid eating inside the car, which is understandable because food crumbs are not only hard to clean; they also attract insects. Other car owners are more relaxed about what you do inside their car, and friends tend to abuse this by getting too comfortable.
If you do not clean your car regularly, the dirt will pile up on the inside, and grime will collect on the outside. That does not paint a good picture of you as a car owner since your car can be a representation of how you take care of yourself. Not to mention collected dirt particles can eventually get to your engine and cause efficiency problems as you drive.
Cleaning at least once every month can considerably extend your car’s life. Driving a clean car is also a more enjoyable experience for both you and your passengers.
2. Change your oil and air filter whenever necessary.
Just like how you take your body to a physical therapy business to recover after injuries, your car also needs to see a maintenance shop occasionally to replace parts that are worn out. Two of the most common car parts that need replacing after a particular time are the oil and air filter.
Some car owners fail to change their oil regularly, mostly because they don’t understand its importance. When you drive your car, its parts move and cause friction with each other, creating heat. The oil is there to lubricate the parts and absorb the heat, preventing your car from overheating. However, engine oil eventually wears out, which lessens its ability to do its job. If you want your car to run smoothly, you have to check the oil at least monthly and replace it if needed.
The air filter works almost the same way as the engine oil, in that it improves fuel efficiency by reducing emissions, effectively taking care of your engine. An annual inspection should be enough to find out if your air filter is still in working condition.
3. Regularly check tire pressure.
Tires are the parts of the car that get tired the most. Constantly hitting the road and other surfaces at varying speeds will surely add to inevitable damage over time, so keeping the recommended tire pressure to ensure the tires will work longer should not be asking too much.
The recommended tire pressure is usually found on a sticker inside the car, right next to the driver’s side door. Keeping your tire pressure at suggested levels decreases the chances of the tires blowing out, which can be expensive to fix with new tires costing somewhere between $400 to $700. Tires with the proper pressure levels also help increase fuel efficiency by offering less resistance to the ground’s surface.
Tire pressure changes the more distance the tires cover, and changes in temperature can also affect pressure levels. As a safety precaution, it is strongly advised to check your tire pressure at least once a month.
Tire rotations should also be done to ease pressure on the tires. The wear on front tires differs from back tires, so rotating them equalizes the wear condition on each tire. Making sure the wear is distributed evenly among the tires adds to their longevity and gives your car safer and smoother riding experience.
Taking care of your car should not be viewed as a hassle, but an investment. The better you maintain your vehicle, the longer you will be able to use it. Keeping your car in good shape also lessens any chance of it breaking down or causing an accident on the road.