5 Common Car Maintenance Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
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Keeping your car in good condition requires knowing what can hinder your progress. Here are common car maintenance mistakes and how to avoid them.
Are you worried that you’re accidentally neglecting your car in a way that could come back to bite you later? Do you fear that you’ve made certain mistakes when trying to keep up with your vehicle? If so, then you need to learn all about car maintenance mistakes.
Doing so will help you in a variety of ways. It can help you extend the lifespan of your car, avoid costly mistakes, and find a trustworthy repair shop to entrust with your car’s condition.
See below for more information on the car maintenance mistakes that you should be avoiding at all costs.
1. Not Changing Your Oil Frequently
Every car owner knows they should be changing their oil. However, very few understand the details of the task. They don’t understand why they need to change it, how frequently, or the purpose it serves in your car’s operations.
To put it simply, motor oil is used to provide lubrication to all the different parts of your engine. Without oil, there wouldn’t be a substance between the different gears, thus causing a metal-on-metal grinding effect. This is a one-way ticket to engine failures. Without oil, the engine would operate much slower than it is meant to.
There are many different numbers tossed out there when it comes to changing the oil. Some people say you need to get it changed every 3,000 miles. Others say you can go as long as 8,000 miles before changing it. We personally recommend that you channel your inner Goldilocks and aim for somewhere in the middle (5,500 miles or so).
Keep track of what your odometer reads the next time that you get your oil changed. Once it gets to the 5,000-mile range, be sure to bring it to a trustworthy repair shop to have the oil changed. That way, you can ensure the job is done right.
2. Ignoring Warning Lights
This is a pet peeve of car mechanics everywhere. Far too many car owners see lights on their dashboards and shrug them off as if they aren’t a sign of an ongoing issue.
The second that you see a light come on in your dashboard, be sure to open up your owner’s manual and determine the purpose of the light. Keep in mind that the light shouldn’t always be taken literally. For example, the “check engine” light sometimes means that your car’s battery is dying or that you have a faulty gas cap on your vehicle.
Once you find the purpose of the light, be sure to contact your trustworthy repair shop right away. They’ll be able to talk you through what the problem might be, and then schedule a time for you to bring it in for analysis.
Think of it this way: the longer that you ignore those dashboard lights, the more money you might be costing yourself. The repairs will add up and it could cause other problems down the line.
For example, a “check engine” light might be trying to warn you of a problem that, if not repaired, could completely ruin your car’s catalytic converters.
If you think that dashboard light is an inconvenience now, wait until the battery on your car dies and you find yourself late for work or on the side of the road waiting for a tow truck. Get it repaired right away!
3. Overlooking Your Battery
Without the battery, your car can’t operate. Yet so many car owners overlook the importance of routinely checking in on the battery’s power. All that’s required is a routine voltage check. As long as the battery is at 12 volts or above, you’re golden!
Next, be sure to inspect the overall quality of the battery under your hood. Look for things such as a cracked battery case, corrosion on the terminals, dirt, water puddling on the battery case, and so forth.
Also, take the time to inspect the cables. Do they look worn out or frayed? If so, then it could result in the battery not working the way you were hoping.
4. Not Replacing Windshield Wipers
On paper, replacing a windshield wiper shouldn’t be a difficult task. They pop off easily, they’re cheap, and they require next to no time at all for you to replace.
Even still, they’re one of the most neglected parts of any car. As a result, many car owners find themselves in unsafe conditions when they can’t see clearly through a rain shower.
Take the time to replace your wipers before you find yourself in a sticky situation. Otherwise, it becomes a safety hazard and could lead to a car accident.
5. Not Scheduling Regular Checkups
You don’t have to be a car expert to take proper care of your car. That’s what car shops are for! Find yourself a trustworthy repair shop that can aid you in maintaining your vehicle.
By scheduling regular checkups, you can help yourself avoid any major issues on the open road. A mechanic will identify the problem and repair it before it worsens.
Not only can this help you ensure you’re never on the side of the road, but it will also extend the life of your car, thus giving you ha higher return on your investment.
Avoid These Car Maintenance Mistakes for Your Vehicle
Now that you have seen an in-depth guide listing some of the most serious car maintenance mistakes that car owners make, be sure to use this information to your advantage.
Take the time to read this article for more information on the 9 best practices for maintaining your vehicle and keeping it in great shape.