Any clued-up motorist knows that it’s important to maintain your vehicle on a regular basis. If you don’t service your vehicle regularly, it’s almost a certainty that your car will encounter a range of problems, which will either mean that you have to fork out thousands of Rands to fix it, or even buy a new car.
Here are some important ways to maintain your car:
Get good windshield wipers
It goes without saying that it is crucial to have windshield wipers that are in good working order – you don’t want to be in a situation in which it is raining heavily and you can’t see the road ahead due to faulty wipers. It is recommended that you buy new wiper blades after about six to 12 months of use and that you don’t buy the cheapest brand out there. To maintain the wipers, you can clean them with a microfibre cloth.
Change your oil
Whether you hire a mechanic to do it or feel skilled enough to do it yourself, you should change your oil every 5,000 kilometres or so, according to experts. However, it also depends on how new your car is, and you might be able to get away with changing the oil at a later stage. Should you choose to change it yourself, you will need a ratchet, an oil filter, an oil pan and a funnel. Ensure that you never change your oil when the engine is hot and always jack up the car.
Attend to your air filter
It’s recommended that you buy a new air filter for your car every year, or alternatively, every 20,000 kilometres. Should you not change your air filter, your car will become overstored with dust, pollen and debris, and eventually, this clogged air filter will affect the performance of your vehicle. Once again, you could decide to take on the task yourself of changing the air filter, with the whole process only taking about ten minutes
Maintain your battery
Here’s a nightmare scenario for many motorists: they try to start their car and discover that the battery is completely dead. This situation is indicative of the importance of maintaining your battery and ensuring that it’s always properly working. Often, a loose battery terminal connection can be the problem, and this can be easily resolved either by yourself or by a mechanic. It’s also important to regularly check that the battery is clean and that the battery fluid has been changed.
Check your brake pads
It is essential to check your brake pads every 3,000 kilometres and change them if required. Faulty brake pads could endanger your life, as your vehicle may fail to stop, especially in a situation when you need to slam on the brakes. It is quite difficult to replace your car’s brake pads, so it is recommended that you hire a mechanic to do it. Make sure that you buy brake pads that are consistent with your vehicle’s model and make.
It’s not only important to maintain your vehicle, but to maintain your vehicle’s security. For only R9.99 a month, Drive and Save will give you peace of mind that your car is insured against theft (terms and conditions apply).