You know what they say: cars are the domain of men, but we have found that this statement is outdated. Today, girls are taking it upon themselves to learn a thing or two about cars, so they aren’t completely helpless when something is amiss. Car maintenance is not very complicated or difficult, but if you’re just starting to learn more about it, it might be overwhelming. If you’d like to have a few tricks up your sleeve and not feel lost when your car is concerned, you can start by reading our useful tips below.
Check your oil
A rule of thumb is to change your oil every 3,000 miles, but it doesn’t mean you should forget about oil after you change it. Every now and then, you should check your oil to make sure there aren’t any leaks, because leaks are dangerous and can lead to serious problems with your vehicle. Leaks can cause engine problems, and they can cost a small fortune to fix, so detecting them early on can save you thousands of dollars and a lot of nerves. You can easily check the oil on your own; all you need to do is find where the oil dipstick is, pull it out, use a rag to wipe it off, so it’s clean, and put it back in. When you pull it out again, if you notice the mark is near the “add” line on the dipstick, you should add some oil to prevent engine damage.
Notice signs of wear
While you can easily spot signs of wear on the outside of your car, spotting them on belts and hoses can be tricky if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Luckily, abnormal signs of wear are easy to spot, and if you notice them, you should have these parts replaced. You can save money if you order car parts online, take them to a mechanic, and ask them to replace the old ones. If you’re planning on doing this, you should make sure you’re getting the right part for your make, model, and year. If you’re on a lookout for abnormal signs of wear on your belts and hoses, you can easily have them replaced and fixed when it’s time, thus significantly prolonging the life of your car.
Learn to check and change tires
A flat tire is always an inconvenience, and when it happens to you, it can make you feel helpless. You should know how to change a flat tire on your own – it’s not too difficult, and it’s something everyone should know how to do. You should first find out what’s the proper tire pressure for your vehicle – you can find the information in the manual, online, or you could simply ask a professional to help you. You could also ask professionals to show you how to replace a flat tire, so when it happens to you, you don’t have to call anyone to come to pick you up. When checking tire pressure, make sure you check the spare tire too; otherwise, you’re risking finding out that the spare is flat in the worst possible moment.
Know your braking system
Extreme weather conditions can be dangerous, especially if you’re not sure how your car will react. When you’re familiar with your braking system, it can help you when you happen to lose traction and start sliding toward something. If your car doesn’t have ABS brakes, you need to pump your brake pedal in and out until it regains traction, and you regain control again. If you have ABS brakes, just stomp on the pedal and hold it down. In both cases, keep the steering wheel as straight as you can.
A car is not something you should buy and then completely forget about until something breaks. It’s a bulky yet delicate machine, and if you take good care of it, it can last for decades. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you will not have a thing or two to take care of overtime, but if you’re careful and take car maintenance seriously, you can save thousands of dollars and have a good and reliable car.