Considering how reliable modern day cars are, it is quite easy to slip into the routine of maintaining the car only when absolutely necessary. That is an expensive habit for everyone, no matter how wealthy you are.
Just as the human body needs to be taken care of to stay in shape, your new car also needs regular care to ensure it doesn’t pack up suddenly. Proper maintenance of your car also keeps your car resale value at an appreciable level, in case you decide to sell and get another vehicle.
Here are 5 essential simple tips that will help you keep your new car in top condition.
And congratulations on the new car!
#1. Tires: Inflate Properly and Check For Wear and Tear
Always ensure your tires are inflated to the manufacturer’s specified pressure. Get a tire gauge and use it to check the pressure whenever you need to inflate your tires. It is advisable to use the tire gauge to check the pressure of your tires bi-weekly. Tires lose some pressure during cold weather, and naturally over time. Also check for worn tread indicators weekly. Replace the tires once they are worn beyond use. Driving with worn tires is dangerous.
#2. Check and Keep all Fluids Topped Up
These fluids are quite easy to forget. But the brake fluid, coolant, transmission fluid, power steering fluid and other fluids your car uses daily need to be checked weekly and topped up if necessary. If you aren’t sure how to go about this, speak to your mechanic.
#3. Check Oil Levels
You need to get into the rhythm of doing this regularly – monthly since your car is a brand new one. The car needs to be on level ground for you to get an accurate dipstick reading. Motor oil is a critical element of your car’s performance, and any dip in oil levels can cause irreparable damage if you don’t act quickly. If you are ever unfortunate enough to experience the dashboard warning light that indicates low oil levels – pull over immediately, shut down the engine and call your mechanic.
#4. Always Use Qualified Mechanics
For your mental and financial health as a car owner, it is important you find a honest, trustworthy and reliable car servicing garage. You want a spot that not only has qualified mechanics, but the right tools they use to diagnose and fix any issues. The old-fashioned referral from a friend is usually one of the best ways to find a reputable mechanic garage. You can also speak to car dealerships around your area for referrals.
#5. Learn Your Warning Dashboard Lights
Your dashboard comes with a host of warning lights. The check engine light, service engine light, brake warning light and many others. Once any of these various lights turn on, speak to your mechanic. You should also spend some time reading the owner’s manual. That should give you a sense of what you are asking your mechanic for when you call. Taking any of those lights for granted could cause irreparable damage or result in a more expensive fix.
The Bottom Line
The good news is that taking care of your car is a relatively easy job. Your owner’s manual is a great resource and sets you off on the right track – that is if you decide to read it. Some of these tips might seem like a lot of checks now and again, but that is a much better place to be than having to cough out loads of cash to get your car back on the road again.