When your vehicle breaks down, getting it running again should be your priority. Being stranded without a functioning car can make your life very difficult. That said, you can keep costs to a minimum. There are a great number of repairs you can easily perform yourself.
Familiarize yourself with the dashboard of your car. Your dashboard should display five different kinds of warning, including the check engine light, oil pressure warning, an alternator warning, a temperature warning and a brake warning. Learn to recognize these different lights so you can easily identify what needs your attention.
Watch out for obvious warning signs that a repair person is not up to snuff. If they avoid your questions, you may want to look elsewhere. You want to be able to trust the person doing your repairs, so go elsewhere.
Follow your car’s tune up schedule. Each car is different, and that means each has different needs. A tune up schedule for one will not be the same for another. Look into your car manual for details on a proper tune-up schedule for your model. Otherwise, you could have more problems in the future.
Put together an auto repair kit and keep it in your car. Your tool kit should have equipment to change a tire and other necessary items. You need to purchase a lug wrench and a jack if you do not have them. Your tool kit should contain these items: socket wrenches, ratcheting tools, a wrench for torque and one that is adjustable, and both a Phillips and a flat head screwdriver as well. Don’t waste your money on bad quality tools. Get good, reliable tools that are not easy to break.
Pay attention to your wiper blades. If they’re not working properly of leave streaks, you might need new wipers. You should replace wiper blades at least once a year or more often if you live in an area where rain is commonplace or if you notice your wiper blades are worn out.
Make sure to ask the mechanic who is about to work on your car whether or not he is certified. If the answer is no, leave right away and get someone else to do the repairs. If he says that he is, ask for some type of proof so you know this true.
Avoid attaching your car keys to a heavy key chain or detach your keys every time you drive. The weight of your keychain can cause problems for your ignition. Particularly, if you notice that the key is hard to extract from the ignition, you need to make a change!
Stick with Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) components. If your car needs parts, choose OEM parts over generic ones. For optimum performance, you should have the OEM parts that are up to the manufacturer’s standards. While generic parts are cheaper, they’re generally a lower quality than the original ones. This means that you may pay more later for replacements.
Replacing a charcoal canister is very expensive, but you can easily replace this part yourself. Take off the wheel located under your fuel tank and disconnect the vacuum lines connected to the old canister. The part should then come right off. Install the new one and connect the lines very carefully before installing the wheel again.
If you have a maintenance log, devote yourself to keeping it up-to-date. If it isn’t, your car may undergo repairs that are not necessary and do nothing to help you. Further, this log is an indication to those working on your car that you expect the best for your vehicle.
It should now be apparent to you that you don’t necessarily have to spend a fortune to have your car repaired. In many cases, you can solve your car problems in your own driveway. Use what you have learned here to get your vehicle back on the highway again.