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Proper Maintenance and Car Repairs

Ignoring your car service usually doesn’t bring any immediate, dire consequences. This is the very reason that so many people simply skip their scheduled service. Yet over time, if you frequently do any of the following, you may be up for troubles like:

– Forgetting to change the oil can result in motor troubles and mean your engine needs to be rebuilt earlier
– Neglecting to keep your tires at the correct pressure can cost you more money in fuel. Under-inflated tires can sometimes overheat and explode.
– Not checking over your hoses can mean an immediate, sometimes dangerous problem when a cracked or worn hose bursts
– A worn timing belt can destroy your engine if it breaks – much better to find this at a car service than on the road
– If you don’t change your CV boots regularly, grit can enter the joint and cause much more expensive problems.

It is also worth noting that with certain driving styles, such as frequent cold starts, stop-start or city-style driving, making many short trips a week, often drive in dusty conditions or tow a trailer, it is more critical that your car gets its services on time, every time.

There is plenty of car maintenance you can do yourself, with a little guidance from your owner’s manual or a 5 minute question-session with your mechanic. Your DIY car service tasks might include:

– Checking your oil regularly and topping up with the correct grade of oil
– Checking your coolant regularly and topping up with the correct type of coolant
– Checking and topping up washer wiper fluid
– Replacing windscreen wiper blades
– Keeping tyres at correct pressure
– Ensure spare tyre is in good condition and correct pressure
– Rotating tires
– Check battery level
– Cleaning battery terminals
– Checking tail lights, brake lights and blinkers

However, it is often much more time-effective to have a qualified mechanic go over the car, with their specialized tools and efficient knowledge of the systems. Mobile mechanics are becoming much more affordable, meaning that you don’t even need to arrange taking your car into the shop to have your car service done – just book in a time when you will be at home for a few hours.

While there are plenty of car service and maintenance activities you can do yourself, some need an expert eye to be effective, and to maintain safety. Some you simply cannot do because they require specialized equipment. Activities like the following are best left to your mechanic:

– Balancing the tires and wheel alignment
– Replacing fuel and air filters
– Replacing the engine oil
– Servicing brakes
– Flush and refill brake fluid
– Flush and fill transmission fluid, and replacing filter
– Replacing/gapping sparkplugs
– Replacing diff fluid
– Flush and refill power steering fluid
– Fuel injection and fuel pump problems
– Computer, module or sensor problems