Having a car offers a life-changing convenience, but let's face it. It can also be quite costly, especially the maintenance that they will require as they get older. This is the reason why we consider having knowledge of basic car maintenance a life skill. It will not just save you a lot of money but might mean the difference of getting stranded somewhere and being able to drive to safety.
Don't worry, most of these maintenance jobs are not as complicated as you think. In fact, the ones that we are going to share with you today can be performed by anyone regardless of their experience and skill level. We promise. All you need are the proper tools and the willingness to get your hands dirty. Let's get started.
Cleaning and Declogging Your Fuel Injector
Fuel injector clogging has got to be one of the most common issues that car owners face, especially those that don't really perform proper car maintenance routines. The problem is, the accumulation of dirt in there can lead to poor emissions, increased fuel consumption, starting issues, and more.
Fortunately, there are fuel injector cleaning kits that you can get in order to unclog your fuel injector on your own. You can easily get them online or in your local car shop. The instructions are very straightforward. Just make sure to follow the steps carefully.
Caring for Your Radiator
Another vital part of your car is the radiator. Fortunately, radiator maintenance is fairly easy. A lot of times, just ensuring that your coolant and radiator fluid is at the proper level is enough to save you from a more serious issue later.
Should you wish to refill your radiator fluid on your own, just remember that it should be diluted with equal parts of water. Or better yet, you can simply purchase an already diluted version for your convenience.
Changing Your Oil
There are a lot of moving parts within your vehicle and they will only work if they are lubricated properly. That lubricant is your oil and it is the bloodline of your car. Otherwise, your vehicle's parts will simply grind against each other and damage themselves and of course, the engine as a whole.
Hence, make sure to change your oil regularly. Just make sure that it meets the viscosity requirements of your car. You'll find this spec in its owner's manual. And while you're at it, go ahead and replace the oil filter too.
Checking Your Spark Plugs
Have you noticed your engine getting quite sluggish? Then it might be a spark plug issue. You can check the issue by looking at your spark plugs yourself.
There are two things to keep in mind before doing anything, though. Make sure to wear rubber gloves and never lean into or touch any metal element of your car as you're performing the check to avoid the risk of getting shocked.
Caring for Your Battery
Did you know that you are already performing basic car battery care every time you don't forget to turn the lights off? But aside from that, here are a couple more ways to further maintain your car's battery and ensure its longer performance.
First, you can clean and replace corroded battery terminals in order to prevent any further strain on your charging system. You can do so with a wire brush and a cleaning paste made with baking soda and water. And second, you can simply disconnect the battery if you're not expecting to drive your car for an extended period of time.
Keeping Your Car Covered
Finally, you'd want to keep your car covered whenever it's not in use. Not only will this keep your car clean and prevent random scratches from happening, but you'll also prevent dust from gathering inside.
You can always use a readymade car cover or make one with the use of tarps. Just don’t forget to secure the tarp with ropes and rocks to prevent it from sliding off or getting blown away.
Regular car maintenance shouldn’t be too expensive, nor should it always be left to the pros. There are a lot of routine procedures you can do on your own such as declogging your fuel injector, changing your oil and replenishing your coolant, cleaning your battery’s terminals, and more. In fact, just the simple step of keeping your car covered with the use of the tarps you might have lying around in your garage can already go a long way in keeping your car in good condition.