Taking care of a car is like taking care of your body – you have to do it consciously and regularly, not to mention the right way. Whether you’re driving it every day or only using it over the weekend to run some errands, the condition of the car you’re using should always be at its best.
Unfortunately, your car can’t take care of itself. Taking care of that car and making sure it’s a well-oiled machine is on your hands. But how do you properly take care of your car to make sure it delivers a top-notch performance?
PMS IS YOUR BEST FRIEND
We don’t mean that pesky once-a-month thing for ladies! Preventive Maintenance Schedule (PMS) is your car’s regular executive check-up. Similar to your annual physical exam (APE) at work, your car is being checked regularly to make sure all parts and components are running smoothly.
Among some of the common things that your mechanic will check for will be if filters for oil, air, and gas need to be changed. Fluid levels for oil, transmission, brake, coolant, and washer are all within normal limits. Don’t forget to ask about your tires! Make sure you’re aware of its thread and the tightness of the lug nuts. The health of your battery will most likely be discussed as well.
You don’t want to ask for help to jumpstart your car in the middle of the road when it breaks down, do you? Most batteries last for 2 years but there are some variants in the market that may last a bit longer, but these are usually more expensive. For the aircon, always check if Freon tubes have leaks or holes to make sure they’re fixed.
These, among other things, are what your mechanic will discuss with you so don’t be shy to ask questions about the condition of the car and clarify if you notice anything strange or unfamiliar. The frequency of a PMS varies so make sure to check with your trusted mechanic how often you should do this for.
CAR WASH IS KEY
If you take a bath regularly (every day, hopefully), so does your car! It doesn’t need to be every day as that will be very time consuming if you do it by yourself, or costly if you bring it every day to the car wash.
Dirt and grime will accumulate especially if you use your car every day regardless of road conditions. That dirt, especially if you wade through flood no matter how low, will eventually make its way to the nooks and crannies of your car causing rust, and you don’t want that!
Every car has a recommended capacity, and while it’s already an established fact that going over it has serious safety implications (not to mention illegal), it can also increase your car’s wear and tear as it puts more than the recommended pressure to the car’s engine, suspension, and tires. Imagine having to carry a sack of rice or anything that’s way more than your carrying capacity, wouldn’t your back and legs hurt also?
It’s not just a ploy of big oil companies, it does matter. The food you put into your body will help in determining how healthy you are in as much as the fuel you put in your car is partly responsible for its performance.
Before you subscribe to the next discount craze that big oil companies are marketing, do your research whether the fuel they’re offering is what’s good for your engine as the fuel you use is responsible for your engine’s performance and life expectancy. Remember, the smoother the engine performance, the longer the car will last.
One additional note, as reservoir tanks at most gas stations are underground, make sure the gas station is not flooded during the rainy season because if it gets infiltrated, your fuel filter will have to work extra hard to eliminate unwanted substances in your fuel.
Let’s face it, the reality of making sure the car is well maintained can be expensive and time-consuming. But, the harsher reality of it is: it will be all the more expensive and so much more inconvenient if you don’t take the time to give your car a well-deserved TLC. Imagine being stuck in traffic in the city heat and your car aircon giving up on you? Or worse, your car breaking down in the middle of a rainy night downtown?
Whether it’s your first car or your third, nothing beats the feeling of smelling that fresh car smell, and going on a smooth long drive – your sturdy tires going effortlessly across the even highway, and your engine working tirelessly to get you safely to your destination. Do the above and you will keep that car for the long haul.
Also read: All About Restoring the Old Car Tires