Car Maintenance

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7 Car Maintenance Mistakes to Avoid

Apart from your home, your car is probably the most valuable investment you will make, and that definitely calls for good care. With some knowledge easily gleaned from the owner's manual and simple regular maintenance checks, it's easy to avoid common and often costly car repairs. Car experts list the following seven motor vehicle maintenance mistakes as those you should avoid at all costs.=

Ignoring Oil Changes

Car engines frequently fail because of problems related to engine oil. When the oil goes lower than the recommended level, the car's engine starts struggling. Change your car's oil at least once every 2,500 miles and top it up when the level drops. A quick weekly look at the dipstick is all that's needed to keep your oil level under control.

Ignoring an Overheating Engine

Crossing your fingers and praying that you will make it to your destination when your car is already overheating is not wise. Overheating is a sign of problems that could cause expensive engine damage. As soon as you notice that your car is overheating, the best thing to do is to stop and call for a tow truck.

Failing to Inspect the Brakes

Like everything else in your car, brake pads wear out over time and need replacing regularly. If you hear a squeaking noise when you step on your brakes, don't ignore it. Replacing the brake pads is expensive, but getting into an accident is much more costly. Don't let neglected, faulty brakes put lives at risk.

Ignoring the Wipers

Few people think about replacing windscreen wipers until it's too late. When you allow the wipers to become a noisy, useless addition to the front of your vehicle, you will have a hard time discerning objects in bad weather. Poor visibility causes accidents. Replace the wipers at least once every year.

Ignoring Dirty Air Filters

When you have clogged air filters and dirty spark plugs, your car will use more fuel than it should because proper combustion depends on them. The grime and dust of city streets are enough to quickly overload most filters with dirt. Get the help of an auto mechanic in determining how often your car needs an air filter change. Remember to have the spark plugs cleaned regularly to ensure a smooth start and better engine efficiency.

Neglecting the Tires

The life of your car tires does not depend on what the manufacturer says. Heat on the roads, the sun, ozone conditions and your driving frequency and style all affect tire lifespan. Most tires wear out long before the typical five-year period that manufacturers estimate. Take your vehicle to an auto garage to check for tire wear, get them rotated regularly and don't wait until the tread is bare before replacing them.

Ignoring Warning Lights

Car warning lights are called "warning lights" for a good reason. Whenever an indicator light on the dashboard comes on and stays on, do not hesitate to take your car for a professional check-up as quickly as possible. As cliched as it may sound, prevention is always better than cure.

One of your primary responsibilities as a car owner is to take good, regular care of your vehicle. No matter how hectic or busy your lifestyle is, there's no excuse for neglecting your car. Even when there doesn't seem to be anything wrong, you need to have a fixed maintenance schedule if you want a longer and more productive life for your car.