If you are a car owner, you already know the drill. Regular car maintenance is important to make sure it continues to bring you to your destination safely. But, you do not have to go to the shop for a tune-up to keep it on the road.
The following are five basic tune-up tips you can do on your own and avoid costly repairs in the future.
1. Engine Oil Level
One of the things you need to check in your engine is the engine oil, and this only takes a few minutes to accomplish (Watch a step-by-step guide on how to check your engine oil). You should make sure the engine oil is not too little or too much to avoid issues with the engine. Before checking the engine oil, park your car on a level surface and let the car rest for at least ten minutes. Look for the removable handle with the words “engine” or “engine oil” on it and take it out. Wipe off the excess oil from the metal wire and put it back it. After around ten minutes take it out again and check the engine oil level. It should be in between the two lines on the wire.
2. Engine Belt
You should also check the engine belt to make sure it does not appear to be near the point of breaking. The engine belt keeps the alternator, power steering pump, and water pump in the engine running. If the engine breaks, the engine will overheat and you will have to call an auto shop to tow your car. You can check the belt by opening the hood and looking for any signs of wear and tear on the belt.
3. Brake Pads
There are times when you would want to speed up on a highway, especially when there are no other cars on the road. Due to this, you should make sure the brake pads of the car are functioning properly to avoid injuries. If you notice a screeching sound whenever you step on the brakes, it would be a good time to have them replaced. The same thing goes when you have to push the brake pedal down too much before the car stops. In this instance, you may have to ask someone to help you in replacing the brake pads, that is, if you are not quite adept in car maintenance.
4. Wheels and Tires
Aside from the engine, the tires are subjected to extensive damage when the car is on the road. It is important to make sure all four tires have the right tire pressure to make them last longer. You should also check if the tires are already too worn out. You can extend the lifespan of your tires by swapping the front tires with the rear tires every few months. This will ensure an even degradation on all four tires since the braking tires normally wear out faster. In addition, you should make sure the wheels are properly aligned at all times.
5. Electrical Parts
To ensure your car remains safe to drive, you should check the different electrical components of the car. Before performing this, make sure the battery is disconnected. Clean any light deposits on the spark plug to make sure it functions properly. You should also check all the light of your car to make sure all of them are working properly. You would not want to find yourself with only one headlight working while going home from work at night.
These are just five basic tune-up tips you can use to avoid costly repairs in the future. While you can perform these tasks at home, it is still recommended to bring your car to an auto shop for a regular tune-up and maintenance to extend its lifespan.