In the education of drivers, they are majorly taught how to drive and thus they are not taught all that a person is supposed to know about his or her own car. This is partly so because there is a great difference from one brand to the other and between models.
I will provide you with a list of diverse things that all drivers need to know how to do so that they can keep their car running longer. These points will prevent you from being stranded on the side of the road!
1. Identify why and how a car does what it does
Maintaining or fixing a car is easier if you know things such as why and how a car shifts gear, accelerates or experiences engine knocking. In addition, you should be in a position of knowing what phrases such as "Suck, Squeeze, Bang, and Blow..." means without hesitating.
2. Gather and consolidate a decent tool collection
Every car owner or driver should have the basic set of car maintenance tools such as a set of socket wrenches, screwdrivers, etc.
3. Make your engine bay clean
A clean engine bay does not automatically guarantee an engine that is fully functioning; nonetheless, it does make finding parts and components easier.
4. Study all of your car's functions
You look silly when you admit that you do not know basic functions of your own car like what BSM implies.
5. Understand how to check and top off all fluids
Checking the oil amount and clarity is a common car maintenance activity. Besides checking the oil amount and clarity, you should also check the brake fluid, power steering to coolant fluids, these all need to be conserved and can be drained or refilled without the assistance of a mechanic.
6. Know how to change your own oil
It is obvious that if you have the right tools you really can learn how to accomplish this basic automotive task. It also saves you a little money.
You can consider the following tips to maintain clean oil:
- If your car is new then the oil monitor should display the subsequent oil change.
- Consult your vehicle owner's manual for endorsed oil change interludes.
- Use your dipstick to regularly check the level of oil. Add more if it is low and if dirty then change it.
Ensure that you maintain a record of the mileage. You can achieve this by taking notes on your car’s manual or on a separate notebook with mileage covered and the dates. This will help you remember the next time you need to change your vehicle's oil.
7. Each time check the fuses first
The majority of car malfunctions can be fixed by just changing a fuse, especially when it has anything to do with the lighting or dash displays. That car manual has a diagram that explains what functions of the car correspond to which fuse.
8. Clean your cars’ fuel system
There exist a lot of bottled gas treatments and engine cleaners. For Every given number of months pour a bottle into the mix then Run it down near to empty before you refill. That will remove particles in the engine and help blow the fuel injectors clean.
9. Conduct proper tire maintenance
Tires that are over or under-inflated are unsafe. Therefore maintaining the tires accordingly will not only save you from unsafe driving but also save your money. It is significant to have knowledge on when and how to check on the status of your tires.
- Underinflated tires do result in poor efficiency of fuel and danger of blow or damage.
- Have a monthly check of your tire pressure depending on your car usage. You can refer to the owner’s manual for the standard PSI. The normal one is usually 35 PSI.
- This is what maintains your vehicle on the road. Tires that are worn out can slip more so on icy or wet roads.
- It's recommended to check your tread on a monthly basis. It’s time to Change your tires with a worn out of up to 2/32 of an inch of the tread indicator.
- • Rotation:
- Tire rotation keeps fuel efficiency and avoids uneven tear and wear
- Refer to your car manual for the advised interval of rotation.
- Any signs of wear demand immediate rotation.
- Alignment & balance:
- Tire Balancing prevents early worn out. Appropriate alignment prevents your car from dragging on one side.
- You can do Alignment and Balance when replacing oil or when changing worn out tires.
10. Be acquainted with how to replace your windshield wiper blades
They should be replaced every 6months or so. Your owner’s manual can give you the correct type of windshield.
11. Do not forget to have a look at your headlights and taillights often and replace them yearly
This is because with time the headlights get dimmer.
12. Routine Brake checks
If you are the kind of person who covers a lot of miles or drives in serious traffic, it's proper to be aware of your next brake check-up.
Observe the following explicit signs as a need for your brake check-up:
- Very sharp sound when stopping or braking
- Vibration of the Steering wheel when decelerating or stopping
- Grinding sounds of Metal against metal
- More time to slow or additional effort on the brake pedal
- Dragging to one side when stopping or braking
- Unpleasant smell when braking
Have your vehicle for a brake check in case the above signs are heard, seen or smelt. However, the worst sign of all is the inability to stop.
13. Look for a good mechanic
Do not go with the cheapest for cheap is expensive and your car is an expensive investment. However, you can inquire from friends, relatives or read online reviews.
14. Study the owner’s manual to know most about your car
This is due to the diversity of the needs of different cars.