Sure, you can give your Ford F-150 a quick tune-up and get it done. But if you want to make sure that your truck continues to run smoothly, you need to ensure that you are doing preventative maintenance on it. Given the advanced technology in most modern vehicles, there is a lot of preventive care that needs to be done. Letís look at what you should do to keep your vehicle running smoothly and efficiently.
The Ultimate List of Car Maintenance Tips
Here is a detailed list of things to do before you hit the road for a long trip and how to take care of your car on the road.
1. Oil Changes Are The Most Important Part of Maintaining Your Car
This tip goes along with making sure all of the fluids in your car are changed regularly. Without doing so, dirt and dust get into them and cause engine failure or rusting on different car parts. It would help if you had a trusted mechanic or someone who knows how to do it themselves change your oil for you regularly. This will also help increase your gas mileage, saving you money at the pump. The regular oil changes should be done every 3,000 miles at least. This way you can be sure that your car is always running smoothly.
2. Check the Tires Regularly
How essential are tires to your vehicle? If you have seen movies showing a tire getting shot out on a car, you know how important they are. The car doesnít run as smoothly, and sometimes it wonít even drive once this has happened. Itís crucial that you not only check for nails or other foreign objects in your tire regularly but make sure that if there are any signs of cracks or wear, you get them quickly replaced before something happens while you are driving on the road. Also, know how to change a tire in case of emergencies. This will help prevent an accident from occurring.
3. Checking The Car Fluids
Fluid levels should be checked often as well. Look at your ownerís manual for the recommended fluid levels for your car. You can check them yourself using a dipstick near the engine, but if you arenít sure which level it is, take it into a garage or dealership. Different fluids need to be changed on different schedules, so make sure that you know when those are due. Tires and fluids are the two most essential elements of your car that need to be looked at regularly. For example, the brake fluid needs to be changed every two years/24,000 miles, while the power steering fluid only needs to be done every five years/100,000 miles.
4. Air Filter
The air filter on your vehicle is essential, and if not maintained regularly, it can cause significant damage to your car. Ensure that the air filter is replaced every 12 months/12,000 miles if you have a gas-powered car or every 8 weeks/5,000 miles if you have an electric one. The best time to replace this is when changing your oil since these are both done simultaneously in most cases. Even better, though, would be to change it right before doing an oil change so that you donít forget. This will help with fuel economy and make sure that all of the parts of your engine are working correctly by providing clean air for them to work with.
5. Schedule routine Tune-ups
If you have an older car, then it is recommended that you get routine tune-ups every year or 10,000 miles. If you have a newer car, these should only be done every other year/20,000 miles. The best time to do this would be during the fall and winter months since the air quality is usually better and your car wonít be as hot. Again, this should always be kept up with and not forgotten about if you want to ensure everything keeps running smoothly on your vehicle. Itís better to be safe than sorry when it comes to maintenance on any vehicle. A professional will be able to tell if anything needs changed or repaired right away, saving you from breaking down somewhere far from home.
6. Get a Good Battery Charger and Keep The Car Fully Charged
Keeping your car fully charged is vital to help the batteries stay strong. If you have a newer vehicle, then this will mean that you need to have it plugged into the charger overnight every once in a while. When charging, make sure that it is always taken care of by storing it near an actual outlet and not using something like a solar charger or turning your vehicle off while charging since these things can damage the battery over time. You must get a good battery charger and ensure your car is always charged up when not in use. This will ensure that you wonít ever have any issues starting it again since everything should be at 100%.
7. Keep Your Car Warm This Winter
Since wintertime means colder temperatures for most places around the world, one tip to keep your car warm would be to plug it in overnight or for several hours during the day before going out with it so that your vehicle has heat inside when getting ready to go somewhere and go out in the cold. If itís not plugged in, make sure to let your car run for a while before using it, so the engine is warmed up. This will help with saving gas in the long run, and it will prevent you from having to scrape a ton of ice off your windshield in the morning when heading out for work or school. It will also decrease the chance of a cold-related breakdown while driving out somewhere and help keep you safe on the road.
Thereís no doubt that maintaining your car is a difficult task, especially given the many moving parts and such. But with the expert tips we discussed above, you may find that itís not as complicated as it seems. In other words, even if you think of yourself as a novice when it comes to car maintenance, you can do this. It just requires a bit of dedication and the proper knowledge. The whole process doesnít have to be stressful, so turn on some uplifting music and get to work.