Keep Your Car Running In Tip-Top Shape

Cars are essential for several reasons: they get you to and from work, they are excellent for carpool purposes and they are the perfect way to travel while on vacation. Whether you drive a luxury sedan or a family sized van, keeping on top of your car's regular recommended maintenance is key to keeping you safe while you drive and keeping your car in tip-top shape. If you find yourself somewhat overwhelmed with routine car maintenance, below is a quick reference guide you can use to keep your car running as it should.

Tire Pressure

Tire pressure is essential for a variety of reasons. Low tire pressure can cause your tire to blow out. If this happens while traveling at a high rate of speed, you are increasing your likelihood of being seriously injured in an accident. Tire pressure is also essential to maximizing your gas mileage, life of the tire and suspension bushings. At the very least, low tire pressure is costing you money at the pump and at the very most, you may be risking your life by avoiding regular tire pressure checks.

Just because your tire looks like it is properly inflated, doesn't mean that it is. Even a top of the line, brand new tire can be leaking air slowly from normal wear and tear. Your car's recommended tire pressure can be found inside the driver's side door and in your owner's manual. The recommended tire pressure will be shown in PSI (pounds per square inch). You can find tire pressure gauges at most auto part stores and gas stations. Carry one in your car at all times to check your tire pressure as often as you fill up at the pump.

Fluids and Filters

You don't need to be a trained professional to check the fluids and filters in your car. Most of the time these items have easily accessible ports that allow you to check for accurate measurements and clean filters. You should regularly check:

  • Oil
  • Power steering fluid
  • Transmission fluid
  • Air filter
  • Cabin air filter

If the fluids are running low or dirty, you should take your car in to a professional to check for leaks and to have the fluid replaced. If your filters are dirty, you can replace them yourself or you can also have them replaced at a professional repair garage.

Should You Call a Mechanic for Maintenance?

Reliable car repair is essential to the health of your car. If you do not feel qualified to make repairs or if your car is experiencing any kind of problem, contact a professional mechanic. They have the tools and know-how to complete repairs properly. They can even stop a minor repair from turning into something major. Mechanics should always be used for:

  • Check & replace belts & hoses
  • Flush fluids
    • Brake fluid
    • Power steering fluid
    • Coolant
    • Transmission fluid
  • Check & replace brakes
  • Check & replace spark plugs

By having these items checked regularly, you will maximize the life of your car. Your owner's manual will list in detail how often these items should be checked and changed. If you don't have your owner's manual, contact a dealer or the manufacturer directly for a duplicate copy.

Don't let your car fall into disrepair. By making a habit of checking the vulnerable areas of your car, you can slow the wear and tear that can shorten the life of your car. By keeping the tires at the right pressure, making sure the fluids are up to par and by working with a professional repair garage, you can ensure your car is running in tip-top shape! (For more information, contact M.R. Automotive)