Maintaining your vehicle is important in order to keep it running efficiently and to maximize its lifespan. Busy lifestyles, however, usually mean that basic maintenance steps fall through the cracks. Keep your car in top condition by following this basic maintenance checklist:
- Get a regular maintenance check from your local mechanic. Your vehicle’s manual will tell you how often this should be done, but a maintenance check is typically recommended every 30,000 miles and at least once a year. Check your spark plugs, brakes, timing belt, air filters, etc. for anything that might need to be serviced or replaced.
- Check your tire pressure and treads at least once a month. Your owner’s manual should list the recommended pressure for your car, and a pressure gauge is an inexpensive tool that’s worth having on hand. Worn down tires make driving unsafe and should be replaced as soon as possible. Keeping your tires maintained will improve your gas mileage. Don’t forget to check your spare tire, too!
- Check your fluids every 1 to 2 months. This includes coolant, transmission fluid, oil, brake fluid, etc. Make sure they are clean and topped off. Don’t forget to top off your windshield washer fluid as well. When checking fluids, be sure to park your car on a flat surface and allow plenty of time for the engine to cool down. If your fluids seem unusually low, be sure to check them again regularly to rule out possible leaks.
- Get an oil change regularly to keep your engine running smoothly. This is perhaps one of the most important steps in order to keep your vehicle on the road. Check out your owner’s manual and make a note of your car’s mileage to find out how often you should do this, or check the sticker placed on your windshield at your last oil change to see when to schedule another.
- Replace your windshield wipers to prevent streaking and keep your visibility as clear as possible when driving through rain.
- Check and clean the battery. Corrosion at the battery terminals can lead to issues and will eventually prevent your car from starting. Check for leaks and replace any damaged batteries immediately.
- Wash and wax your car regularly to prevent a buildup of bugs, dirt, and grime. Keeping your car clean and waxed will prevent corrosion and fading to your car’s exterior.
- Get your tires rotated regularly to ensure even wear on all four of your tires, making them last longer. It’s a good idea to have your tires rotated at every oil change.
- Check and replace the air filters. Clogged filters can hinder your car’s acceleration and reduce gas mileage over time.
Regular maintenance will keep your vehicle on the road longer, and will also familiarize you with your car so you’re more likely to catch a problem early. Be sure to read your owner’s manual in order to get the most out of your car. For your next service appointment in Wilmington, NC, call Performance Auto Specialists today at 910-343-1650.Tags: car care, car maintenance, checking car fluids, oil change, tire pressure, tire treads