Having your car run well means keeping up with regular car maintenance and repair, but what does regular car maintenance look like? Of course, it may vary depending on the type of car you drive, but there are a few common things that every car needs in order to run smoothly and great. Below we’ve listed 5 common things that all cars need to run well.
1. REGULAR OIL CHANGES
It should come as no surprise that oil changes are a part of regular car maintenance and repair. They happen to be among the most common types of services performed on vehicles as new motor oil is essential for healthy engine function. There are two types of motor oil – synthetic and conventional. Synthetic oil will generally provide better lubrication and engine protection than conventional oil, however you should ask your oil change or car care professional which oil to choose if you are unsure. Your car care professional should also instruct you on how often to get your oil changed (and use CarAdvise to set oil change reminders!)
2. ANTIFREEZE / COOLANT
Antifreeze coolant (aka antifreeze) is an important component to car maintenance and repair. Antifreeze helps prevent engine problems that arise from the outside temperature – overheating when it’s hot out and freezing when it’s cold out. Have your mechanic check your coolant level in your car each shop visit to ensure that you have enough fluid to cover the minimum fill line in your car. Coolant flushes are also a great idea for vehicles that are older or being used beyond normal wear and tear. All vehicles should have this done according to the manufacturer recommendations.
3. Oil and Air Filter Replacements
Your engine is equipped with two types of filters, the oil filter and the air filter, that are crucial to maintain and replace when necessary. Your oil filter will help keep debris away from your engine as does your air filter, which also supplies air flow to your engine for cooling and proper function. Your air filter plays a big role in improving your fuel efficiency and decreasing your emissions. Both of these filters need to be changed regularly – check your car’s owner manual to see how often these should be changed and have your mechanic or car care professional check your filters when you visit.
4. Car Battery = Car Power
A healthy car battery is essential to having your car run well. Every car needs one in order for the engine to start, so it’s a common part that is in need of maintenance and repair. Your car battery needs to be replaced somewhat regularly – about once every 3 years or sooner. Take good care of your car’s battery by not letting it run for a long time and replacing it when it gets old will help you avoid a dead battery and having to get a jump. For instructions on how to jump-start your car, check out our article on the topic!
5. Healthy Tires
The tread on your tires will wear over time, which creates potential safety hazards if not changed. Additionally, you’ll want to be sure that your tires have adequate inflation to avoid uneven tread and other tire problems. These are things that can be handled by your car care professional or tire specialist. If you live or are traveling to someplace with a winter climate, be sure to get your tires changed to winter tires before the season begins. Ask your mechanic for recommendations on tires for your vehicle if you’re unsure. Read more about our 5 tips for success with tire maintenance.
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