Some of Your Vehicle’s Most Basic Maintenance
Your vehicle needs to be maintained, no matter where it goes or how often you drive it. When the time comes to get behind the wheel, you’ll know whether or not you’ve done enough to get it ready for the inevitable challenges of driving around.
These challenges can include all kinds of things, from slippery conditions to cold weather, all the way to simple things like bugs on the windshield. In all of these scenarios and more, you have to be ready for as much as you can be.
The thing is a lot of problems look like they are random catastrophes when they are actually fairly predictable if you have an idea of what to look for. A lot of things just seem as if they randomly happened, but they actually had large precursors in the form of deferred maintenance.
Deferred maintenance means stuff that one totally could have taken care of in advance, but simply didn’t do for whatever reason. The good news is there are several things you can get handled that will save you a ton of headaches in the future.
Motor oil is one of the most basic parts of vehicle maintenance, but all too often, people let excuses get in the way of simply getting this done. If you haven’t checked to be sure that the oil you’re putting in is ready for the colder winter weather, it can become a pain at the worst possible time to get your car started.
Certain viscosities of oil work perfectly fine during the summer, but are prone to getting thick and sludge-like during the winter.
Changing your oil doesn’t need to happen as often as a lot of places suggest, but this comes down to covering your backside against warranty problems.
In most vehicles, the dip stick is going to be your best friend. If the oil level is low, this can signify a serious problem down the road because you might have a leak or be burning oil.
In the short term, keeping a few containers with you that you can pop into the car before you go anywhere is useful. Also, be sure to check when the automaker says you should check – when the engine is warmed up, or when it’s cold.
The cold will help you avoid burning yourself, but can give you a false reading.
Naturally, checking your tire pressure should be a weekly thing when you fill up the tank. But then, it’s also essential to do the penny test. Put a penny into the groove of the tire on the Lincoln side of the coin.
If you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, you need to replace your tires to avoid having awful traction the next time there’s any kind of road hazards like heavy rain or snow.
If you can’t even see his forehead, you probably have a couple of months before you’re going to need to check again.