Published By: Elisa Ghosh

5 Key Maintenance Tasks for Your Car to Avoid Costly Repairs

How often do you maintain the car you own? Does it cost you a lot  won’t now!

Maintaining your car is crucial for ensuring its longevity, reliability, and safety. While it might seem tempting to skip regular check-ups and minor repairs to save time and money, neglecting essential maintenance tasks can lead to significant and expensive problems down the road. Let’s explore these essential tasks and understand why they are vital for your car’s health.

Regular Oil Changes

Oil is the lifeblood of your engine. It lubricates the engine's moving parts, reduces friction, and helps to prevent overheating. Over time, oil breaks down and becomes contaminated with dirt and debris, which can cause engine parts to wear out more quickly. Most manufacturers recommend changing the oil every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, but this can vary depending on the type of oil used and your driving conditions. Always refer to your car's owner manual for specific recommendations. Also, regularly check your oil level and top it up if necessary. Use the type of oil recommended by your car manufacturer, and don't forget to change the oil filter with each oil change to ensure optimal performance.

Check and Maintain Tire Pressure

Properly inflated tires are crucial for safe driving and can help improve your car's fuel efficiency. Under-inflated tires can cause poor handling, increased wear, and the potential for a blowout, while over-inflated tires can lead to a harsh ride and uneven tire wear. It's a good habit to check your tire pressure at least once a month and before long trips. Also, don't forget to check the spare tire. As a tip, use a reliable tire pressure gauge to check the pressure and compare it to the recommended levels found in your car's owner manual or the sticker on the driver's side door jamb. Adjust the pressure as needed and inspect tires for signs of wear or damage.

Inspect and Replace Brake Pads

Brake pads are a critical component of your car's braking system. Worn-out brake pads can significantly reduce your car's braking efficiency, increasing stopping distances and the risk of accidents. Brake pads should be inspected at least every 12,000 miles or once a year, whichever comes first. If you hear squeaking or grinding noises when braking, it's a clear sign that they need to be checked immediately. Always, pay attention to how your brakes feel. If the pedal feels soft or if the car pulls to one side when braking, it could indicate a problem. Regularly check the brake fluid level and top it up if necessary.

Replace Air Filters

Air filters prevent dust, dirt, and other contaminants from entering the engine. A clean air filter ensures optimal air flow and combustion, which can improve your car's performance and fuel efficiency. Most manufacturers recommend replacing the air filter every 12,000 to 15,000 miles, but this can vary based on your driving conditions. Driving in dusty or polluted areas may require more frequent replacements. Check your air filter regularly and replace it if it appears dirty or clogged. This simple task can be done at home and can make a big difference in your car's overall health.

Maintain the Cooling System

The cooling system prevents your engine from overheating. A malfunctioning cooling system can cause significant engine damage, leading to expensive repairs. The coolant level should be checked every time you have an oil change, and the system should be flushed and refilled every 30,000 miles or as recommended by your car manufacturer. Regularly inspect the radiator, hoses, and coolant reservoir for leaks or damage. Make sure to use the correct type of coolant for your vehicle and never mix different types of coolants.

As you start performing these five key maintenance tasks regularly, you can help ensure your car remains in good condition, runs efficiently, and avoids costly repairs. Regular maintenance not only saves you money in the long run but also enhances the safety and reliability of your vehicle. Always refer to your car's owner manual for specific maintenance guidelines and consult a professional mechanic if you are unsure about any maintenance procedures.