February 9, 2021
Give Your Car Some LOVE this Valentine’s Day… and every other day of the year!
For most of us, our car is our biggest financial investment aside from our home. We’re connected to our cars, but are we devoted to their long-term health? Like any relationship, you get back what you give and just by maintaining it regularly, your car can get better gas mileage and give back years of great performance. So why not show something so important in your life a little love this Valentine’s Day?
10 Ways to Show Your Car You Care:
1. Clean your car and undercarriage
Road salt can damage your vehicle by eating away at its undercarriage. Regularly wash your car and clean off road salt and grime. Be sure to wax your car at the beginning and end of the warm season. These steps can keep your ride looking sweet.
2. Clean out the junk in your trunk
Carrying too much extra baggage in your trunk increases the weight of your vehicle and lowers your gas mileage. Taking some time to clean out your trunk now could save you gas money later.
3. Check and rotate your tires
Check the pressure on each of your tires on a regular basis, especially when it’s cold out. Under inflated tires can decrease your gas mileage and will wear faster. When tires are worn, they decrease road traction and the car’s ability to handle on the road, making it unsafe to drive. Rotating your tires regularly ensures they wear evenly and maximizes the life of the tire, saving you money.
4. Change your oil and filter
Changing your oil and filter helps minimize engine stress. When an engine runs, combustion by-products are produced and end up in the oil. These by-products reduce the ability of oil to lubricate the engine and increase the amount of wear on the engine. The oil filter keeps oil deposits, dirt, and particulates out of the combustion chamber, where they can cause damage.
5. Change your air filter
The air filter ensures that dust and dirt from the air doesn’t contaminate your engine. If the filter is clogged or dirty, it can cause loss of power to the engine and can lower your gas mileage by as much as 10%.
6. Check your belts and hoses
A belt or hose failure can cause an overheated engine, loss of power steering, and loss of the electrical charging system. Inspect belts for wear and tension. Inspect hoses for excessive mushiness, excessive hardness, brittleness, or cracking.
7. Check your battery
Vehicle battery posts accumulate corrosion. This happens faster if the battery connections aren’t secure. To keep your battery operating longer, make sure it’s free of corrosion and that the battery cover is in place and properly anchored. Consider replacing your battery and plugs if they are more than 2 years old.
8. Check your brakes
Brake fluid absorbs moisture, and moisture in the brake system is lethal. Because it’s silent, you may never know the damage it’s causing until it’s too late. Replacing brake fluid regularly can prevent costly repairs down the road. Additionally, failure to replace worn brake pads can result in expensive brake rotor service later.
9. Flush your coolant system
To avoid metal corrosion, have your coolant system thoroughly flushed every two years and replaced with the appropriate antifreeze. Make sure to use the proper coolant mix, check the coolant reservoir monthly, and top it off as needed. Your car will love you for it!
10. Replace your windshield wipers
Windshield wipers are the most overlooked and underestimated items on an automobile. Have you ever been caught in a rain or snowstorm with bad wipers… maybe on the highway or a winding road? If you have, you probably know why it’s important to replace your wiper blades on a regular basis. You can’t drive if you can’t see, and anything that impedes vision impedes safety.
Show your car some love with these 10 helpful tips, and it will love you back today and tomorrow!