Daily car care to keep your ride in great shape
Buying a car, regardless of how much you've spent, is an investment, and investments require looking after. Regular car care is the best way to ensure your vehicle functions at its optimal level and retains its value as long as possible. It's even been said that the condition of someone's car says something about their character, but more than that, a car that is well cared for is less likely to yield problems and be easier to sell. How to maintain a car and basic, regular car maintenance does not have to be daunting if you approach it methodically and keep a guide or checklist to remind you. Here are some handy, practical car-care tips.
Naturally, the smooth functioning of the machine that is your car is vital, and while there are some daily car maintenance tips to follow, we offer a more exhaustive car maintenance checklist that will help you keep track of routine maintenance on a car. Here is a brief summary of this guide to remind you what needs to be checked:
How to take care of your car is not limited to mechanics only and routinely checking up on what's under the hood. A quick check-up of your car every morning before driving off is always a good idea. Here is a guide on daily checks you can do to help ensure your car is in tip-top shape:
Keeping your car in top shape starts with keeping it clean and free of clutter before you even consider adding extras such as snazzy carpets or seat covers. Clean the interior of your car properly, clear out any trash, empty the ashtray, and vacuum the carpets often. Sedan cars and those with large trunk spaces can also easily become roving storage zones - clear out bags, clothing and shoes, toys, or work items that you may have forgotten about.
Clean grit and dust out of the air vents with a brush and treat the dashboard with a purpose-made product that cleans it, but avoid silicone-based products that cause the dashtop to shine and reflect in your eyes. Another good tip is to use proper leather-care products on your leather seats. Knowing how to keep your car interior looking new should not be too much work if you keep it clean and put in some effort on a regular basis.
Old cars don't need expensive restoration to look their best. And, you don't want to overcapitalize on an old car unless it's a rare and valuable classic. How to make an old car look new again - or almost new - often comes with good detailing:
One of the most important things to know about cars is that they need constant care to look good and function at their best. Always get a car serviced on time and definitely checked up before long trips. Looking after your car means time and effort, yes, but this is never wasted when you consider the money you've invested. This also reduces the likelihood of breaking down. Good car-care habits will ensure a noticeably better resale value when the time comes to sell it and forms an important part of how to prepare a car for sale.
While this certainly is better than not washing your car at all, it's generally advisable to make use of purposed car shampoo that is not abrasive and will not strip the wax off your paintwork. Wax and a sealant are ideal for keeping your paintwork protected, so any detergent that is harsh and removes these layers should be avoided.
The owner's manual is your first port of call here, and in normal conditions, there shouldn't be a need to replace this more than every 30,000 miles. However, if you live in a dusty area and/or traverse dirt roads regularly, you may need to replace the air filter more frequently.
It could mean that coolant fluid has found its way into the engine oil, possibly by way of a faulty head gasket. This is a serious problem that could ruin your engine and you should have a mechanic fix it without delay.
Ask your mechanic or dealership if your car has a timing belt and how frequently it should be replaced. This information can also be found in your car's owner's manual. Typically, this should be done every 50,000 to 90,000 miles, but it varies from car to car. Some cars have timing chains that can run for much longer between changes, but the parts and labor will be more expensive.