Being a car owner is convenient and even necessary. You can go anywhere and do anything you want, whenever you want. Of course, this means that your car can break down at the most inconvenient time, leaving you stranded by the side of the road. The tips in this article are going to help you to get your car back into great shape.
Familiarize yourself with the dashboard of your car.
Your dashboard should display five different kinds of warning, including the check engine light, oil pressure warning, an alternator warning, a temperature warning and a brake warning. Learn to recognize these different lights so you can easily identify what needs your attention.
There are many how-to videos that you can turn to for auto repairs. Everything from a simple tire change to changing your fuel filter can be found in video form. These videos will take you through each step in making the repair and will save you the time and the cost of taking it to a mechanic.
Communicate with your mechanic as much as possible. Explain the issues you have been encountering with your car and do not hesitate to ask questions to your mechanic if you do not fully understand the repairs that are needed. Ask about prices and do not let your mechanic fix your car until you fully understand charges.
To save a trip to the auto repair shop, you should take a look at your owner’s manual.
Here, you may find hints or perhaps answers to questions you may have about your vehicle. It can be quite helpful to know the size of your engine or its configuration, which is usually found in the manual.
In addition to basic tire changing equipment, keep a plastic tote filled with DIY auto repair supplies in the trunk of your car in case of emergencies. Fill it with at least a quart each of motor oil, transmission fluid, steering fluid, and brake fluid and a gallon of water. Add a can of penetrating oil spray, a roll of duct tape, twine, bungee cords and basic tools so that you can manage minor repairs on the road.
Avoid unexpected auto repair problems while driving by performing a basic safety check before you set out in your car. Start your engine, turn on your lights and your flashers and walk all the way around your car. Check your tires and make sure your lights and flashers are working properly. This simple check will ensure a safer ride and help you avoid the need for emergency repairs.
Make a DIY kit to store in the trunk to help you in times of need.
Your car probably came with what you need to change a tire. A good lug wrench and jack are key. You should have a Phillips and flat head screwdriver and several types of wrenches. Do not waste money by getting cheap tools. Invest in high-quality tools that you will own forever.
Don’t get sucked into to the lure of aftermarket parts for new cars. You want your baby to run as well as possible for as long as possible, and that means spending the extra to get parts that match the ones already in your car. Trying to get that clunker to run just a few more miles? Save the money and take the aftermarket versions.
Even if you aren’t particularly handy, there are a few DIY repairs that almost anyone can do. For example, changing the windshield wiper blades is really just a matter of snapping off one set and snapping on another. Look in your user’s manual or use a measuring tape to determine what size you need. Don’t be dismayed if the store where you purchase your windshield wiper blades only has one in the right size. You can use one that is an inch shorter on the passenger side of your windshield without causing any problems.
Changing a car battery is quick and easy.
It usually involves unfastening a clip on top of the battery and using a wrench to loosen and remove the connectors. (Naturally, you should do this with your engine off!) Brush the connectors clean with a wire brush. Lift out the old battery and put the new battery in its place. Fasten the connectors securely and refasten the clasp. You should be good to go!
Listen for any strange noises that your car may be making. These may be popping sounds, knocks, squeals, or something else. They are definitely symptoms of some sort of issue that needs auto repair. Keep a log of when you hear them, and note the type of driving you were doing when they occurred. It will help the auto shop diagnose the issue properly.
Just because the car has stopped doesn’t mean you must spend a ton to get it repaired. Often, it is possible to repair your car yourself. Use these tips to get your automobile back on the road.