Prologing the life of your car

A good modern car can potentially last for decades, but that only happens through a combination of good fortune and good maintenance. While you can’t do much for fortune, there are a number of basic maintenance procedures you can do to keep your car running better for years to come. Here are some key points to keep in mind as a responsible driver invested in prolonging the life of your car.

First of all, the most basic but often forgotten tip might be to let sleeping dogs lie. In other words, don’t go looking for problems that don’t exist. If you are fortunate enough to be the owner of a brand new car, remember that in most cases, you will have a three year warranty on your side for protection against most issues. If you have a sneaking suspicion that there’s something wrong with your ride, all you need to do is take it to the dealer you bought the car from and have them take a look at it. In most cases, they will be willing and able to repair it free of charge.

Keep in mind that your warranty cover will apply to the car rather than simply to the person who originally bought it, so even if you bought the car used, as long as it’s under three years old, the warranty can still be taken advantage of. And in many cases, even after the warranty runs out, the costs of keeping it going will be bearable in your wallet.

Another tip to keep in mind is that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In other words, it is always better to do a little bit of maintenance than it is to do a large amount of repair work. The best way to stay out of trouble with your car is simply to stick to a regular maintenance schedule.

Most new cars won’t need much from you as long as you take them in every now and then to get the big things taken care of. If you ever plan on selling your car, you’ll want to keep track of its service history so the next owner knows you took care of the car itself. Look up the manual and service book, find out what needs to be done and how often, and either start taking care of it yourself or booking appointments to have your local mechanic keep things up to date.

Between services, check your oil and coolant levels. You’ll need to pop the bonnet to do both of these things, but they aren’t much trouble once you’ve had a bit of practice. When the engine has recently run, check the oil levels while the engine is turned off with a dipstick. If the oil is in between the fill and empty levels, you’re doing fine, but you’ll want to top things up if it’s below the empty or low line.

Additionally, if the oil is pure black, you’ll either need to change it or take it to the garage to have them do it. The process is the same with coolant, except you just need to look through a clear reservoir next to the engine to see if the coolant is between the high and low markings. If it is, you’re set to go. If it’s not, stop by the shop to buy coolant and fill it up.