When you purchase a vehicle, it’s not a decision you make lightly and because of the cost involved, you want to get the longest life from it that you can.
The first tip for keeping your vehicle in top running condition is to read and understand your owner’s manual. You’ll also want to spend some time with a trusted auto service mechanic like Virginia Auto Service, about regular maintenance.
1. Fluid check: On a regular basis you should be popping the hood to check vehicle fluids. Fluids include antifreeze coolant, transmission, power steering and brake fluids. Don’t forget to check your windshield washer fluid.
2. Brakes: These should be checked and professionally bled and purged of old fluid and refilled with new fluid every two years. Without proper maintenance, you can run into expensive brake issues such as rotted brake lines or malfunctioning anti-lock brake pumps. If your brake lines rot, moisture can seep in and damage the entire braking system.
3. Upkeep: Cleaning and washing your vehicle, inside and out, not only adds to its resale value, but it makes for a more enjoyable ride. If you notice any rust bubbles or dents when you’re washing the car, you should have them addressed as soon as they appear.
4. Oil: Check your owner’s manual or ask your service professional but it might be wise to change to a synthetic lubricant oil – it’s more costly but the benefits outweigh the cost. Synthetics offer superior performance and lubrication. Additionally the synthetics are more environmentally friendly as they don’t use fossil fuels.
5. Recalls and Service Bulletins: If you’re the original owner of the car, you should be notified of manufacturer recalls. If you aren’t the original owner, check the Internet or with a local dealer to see if there have been any recalls issued.
6. Fill it up: With gasoline, it might be tempting to skimp and use a cheaper grade. When you go to the pump use the gas specifically formulated for your vehicle type.
Routine maintenance such as fluid checks and keeping your car clean can be done by the average weekend mechanic. When it comes to having larger vehicle maintenance issues addressed, it’s best to work with a certified auto mechanic. It’s always best to know a mechanic and a garage that you’d like to work with before the need arises.