A smooth-running automobile can make your day as fulfilling as you might have imagined- barring any traffic congestion though. However, what would you make of having your car suddenly stop in the middle of the road while you are looking to meet up with an appointment? – Frustrating, I guess. I have seen [on a number of occasions] car owners/drivers become discomfited as their externally good looking cars just refused to move. But, as events are often preceded by a number of factors so does every problem developed by any car traceable to one or more component parts. And it is in the light of this that we shall be looking into some maintenance tips.
Taking care of your car’s engine
The engine being the ‘heart’ of an automobile requires a great deal of attention. First of all, you should make it a point of duty to check the oil at regular intervals; seeing to it that the oil level falls between the 2 notches on the dipstick- remember that your car has to be parked on a leveled surface in order to get accurate reading- and you should also change the oil when need be- oil that has become murky or dark overtime, is not good for the functioning of your car.
Again, considering the possible accumulation of debris- which could be made to stick due to oil leaks- in some delicate parts of your car’s engine, it is advisable that you judiciously inspect the engine from time to time. Whenever you notice debris clogging up; you should make use of a soft cotton cloth and detergent [mixed in water] to degrease and properly clean up the engine [while it is cool]. Then, gently rinse off the lather and dry up the engine as much as you can with a towel. While cleaning up the engine, you should be careful with the cables in order not ruin your car’s electrical system.
Additionally, dirty air filters should be replaced with new ones, and you should always pay attention to the condition of the car’s drive belt. One more thing; never allow your car to run when the engine coolant is below the normal level to avoid overheating.
A good spark plug is highly beneficial to your car’s health and also boosts fuel economy. On the contrary, a worn spark plug or one that has deposits on it, will not only make the fuel to burn relatively faster but could also affect the car’s acceleration and even make it to break down suddenly. So, you should give the spark plugs a check before hitting the road, and have it changed as at when due- in most cases, spark plugs are to be replaced after covering a mileage of about 48,000 kilometers or 30,000 miles.
Though there isn’t much to be done when it comes to battery maintenance but paying heed to little details is yet essential. You may need to check the battery’s terminals to ensure that they are not loose and also see if there is any mineral buildup around them. You should clean up the deposits [with wire brush] once you notice them. But you should always remember the golden rule when disconnecting the car’s battery: you should disconnect the negative terminal first and then the positive; the reverse is however the case when reconnecting- positive first and then negative.
You should use distilled water to top off the electrolyte should it fall short of the normal level. One more piece of advice: try as much as you can not to run your car’s electrical system while the engine is off- this will help to preserve the life of the battery.
To ensure that the braking system is functioning at optimal level; you should make sure the brake fluid is full, and that worn out brakes are replaced as soon as possible. When it is time to change the brake fluid, see to it that the recommended type is used.
That is how much we can go for now but it is important to leave you with this: that you are well informed about some DIY tips on car maintenance, does not mean you should not take the automobile [to an accredited or trusted auto-mechanic shop] for routine check- say once every 6 months.