Most Important Checklist to Maintain Vehicle

Car Maintenance Checklist

Purchase of new car needs quite a bit of thought and preparation. Howbeit, work does not end when buyer signs on cheque. As car is the biggest investment after home, it is in better interest of buyer to keep it in good working condition. Regular maintenance of car is very important in order to keep it running properly. Doing so will also save your money on repairs in future.

Vehicle manuals are a great resource for keeping track of when your car needs servicing. Furthermore, warranty given in this manual also outlines the specifics of regular car maintenance. It is buyer’s responsibility to keep tabs of these service records.

All automobiles need maintenance to perform at their optimum level. When this service is not performed, it can have negative effects on the working of car. Following are these common routines that must be performed regularly:

  1. Check Lights

All lights in and outside of your vehicle must be in working order to provide safety for you and other drivers on road. Turn signal lights, headlights, brake lights and taillights should be examined on regular basis.

Visually inspect and check condition of all lights of your car once in a month to ensure they are working properly. Doing so will also save you from causing accidents at night. Broken or non-working light can be particularly hazardous for you.

  1. Check Fuel Filter

Fuel filter causes vapor locking when its maintenance is ignored. It is a problem that usually affects gasoline-fueled internal combustion engines. Vapor lock occurs when liquid fuel change from liquid to gas when it is still in fuel delivery system.  You should always have clean fuel filter to ensure that your car runs smoothly on roads.

  1. Inspect Tires

It is important that your car tires wear evenly and it drives smoothly. Tires take a beating and require regular monitoring for uneven wear patterns. It is recommended that they should be rotated after every 5000 miles to ensure they are properly aligned and inflated for smooth drive.

  1. Examine Hoses

Hoses also break down or wear out just like other pieces of equipment. It should have secure connection to car’s engine and must be replaced after a determined amount of miles. These are listed in your vehicle manual.

Checking hoses regularly can help you avoid unexpected problems in the middle of the road. Signs like cracking or thinning in hoses means it should be replaced immediately.

  1. Change Oil Regularly

Whether you use dipstick to check oil level and oil’s color or you have electronic gauge for this purpose, you must know how to check it. Oil change is quite critical for clean engine. It should be changed after every three months, which is about 3000 miles for most vehicles. Make sure you consult your vehicle manual before changing oil as it varies from model to model.

  1. Check Brakes

Whenever you start hearing metal grating noise it means that you have delayed the maintenance of brake pads and they are worn out. Regularly inspecting the brake pads of your car to ensure they are working properly helps maintain the complete braking system.

  1. Inspect Serpentine and Timing Belt

Timing and serpentine belt are critical to many working components in an engine. Whenever you see any signs of its breakdown, these belts should be replaced right away.

Using broken belt can damage many other car accessories making the repair even more expensive. Losing any of these belts in the middle of road can leave you stranded which can be both frightening and frustration.

There is a misconception that timing belt has to be replaced every 60,000 miles and serpentine belt needs replacement every 40,000 miles. It is not true as all real numbers are available in your vehicle manual. Check it online in case you do not in manual.

  1. Cooling System

As its name implies, cooling system helps in keeping your car cool. It reduces the chances of car overheating which is the big reason that cooling system should be maintained at regular intervals. It also needs flushing regularly. Coolant also works as a lubricant for water pump which ensures that this system functions properly.

  1. Learn to Check Fluids

Even if you have no idea how to change your power steering, antifreeze coolant or wiper fluid, you must learn how to check its fluid levels. All fluids should be checked at regular intervals.

Your vehicle manual has the types of fluids that are suitable for your car and how often they should be changed. Never ignore any type of leak in your car as it can damage many other car parts.

  1. Examine Car’s Battery

Although many car batteries nowadays do not require much maintenance but you must know where it is located in your car and check it to ensure it’s not leaking. In case you see any fluid in car battery, clean it with battery cleaning brush.

Car maintenance is not just a recommendation. It is essential for vehicle to perform at optimum efficiency and for this, regular maintenance is mandatory. It will also extend the life of your vehicle.

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