May 6, 2020
What is the Easiest Way to Maintain My Vehicle?
Maintaining our vehicles can fall by the wayside with all of the things we need to maintain these days between our homes, our jobs, and our relationships. It has become extremely important to stick to a maintenance schedule to make sure your auto stays healthy on the road. The best way is to make a simple system to help you stay on top of it all.
What is a Recommended Maintenance Schedule?
First of all, all vehicles come with a recommended maintenance schedule found in the owner’s manual. Typically, the owner’s manual can be found in the glove compartment on the passenger side. It will tell you when fluids, wipers, tires, and lights might need to be changed. If you have lost your owner’s manual, you will be able to find it online in a PDF version. Following the manufacturer’s recommended schedule will save you a lot of money over the course of time. It will help you avoid the mechanic’s shop and keep money in your wallet. Make sure to have it available, it will answer many questions.
If you do not enjoy reading and flipping through your owner’s manual to find when you should take in your car for service, then one of the best systems to follow to keep your vehicles running smoothly is to utilize your fill ups at the gas station. Some owners check their fluids and tire pressure every time they stop to fill up with gas to make sure their vehicles are running at optimum health. That could help you make sure that you are aware of what is happening with your auto, but probably is not necessary to do that much checking. At Car Swaddle, we recommend doing some simple maintenance tasks every other time you fill up your tank.
First, Clean Your Windshield and Windshield Wipers
Alright, this is the easiest thing to do that can drastically improve your driving experience. Depending on where you live, the windshield can really get dirty quick. If you live around a lot of trees, birds will inevitably leave their mark. If you live in a dry area, then when it rains, the droplets will leave dusty marks on the windshield. On sunny days, this dust combined with splattered bugs really obscures driving vision. Make sure to clean your windshield every other time at the gas station.
While you are at the gas station, you should also check your windshield wiper fluid level. It is one of the easiest things to check out in your car. It can be found under the hood of your automobile, found in a plastic canister. Typically, the lid of the canister will be labelled to show you which on hold the wiper fluid. The plastic canister also should tell you how much should be in the tank. If you are low, it is pretty easy to find some fluid at the gas station where you are parked to pour some into the tank.
Next, Check Your Tires
Having tires filled at the right pressure gives you a comfortable ride and helps you get the most life out of them. It also improves the safety of your driving experience. Having full tires improves how quickly your vehicle comes to a full stop and can also extend the life of your brakes. The brakes will have to work less hard if the tires are at the right pressure and have good traction. You can check the tread of your tires by sticking a penny in between the rubber grooves in the tire. The penny will need to be upside down with Lincoln’s head facing you. If Lincoln’s head is fully visible and not covered by the tread of the tire, then it is time to get your tires changed. If the tread still barely covers part of the Lincoln’s head, then you can rotate your tires to extend their life.
Finally, Check Your Oil Levels and Quality
Having gone to the gas station has warmed up your engine. After your engine has been sitting for 5 minutes or more, you can check your engine’s oil levels. Grab a clean, lint-free cloth or a paper towel found next to the squeegees. Now you are ready to open up the hood and find the yellow or orange dipstick circular handle sticking out of the left side of the engine. Gently pull the dipstick out to check the fluid level as well as the color. Now, use the clean, lint-free rag and wipe the dipstick clean. After the dipstick is clean, dip it in the reserve again to check how much fluid is still in the engine. The dipstick has markings and usually words that let you know how low you are running so you can fill up the engine again with either synthetic or conventional oils. If the color is amber… then you’re golden! If it comes up black then it is time to schedule a change.
If it is black, dark or low, then it is urgent to schedule a change. Without properly greasing the parts of your vehicle, the gears will start grinding up against each other. The metal will start flaking off and parts will wear out. The flaking parts will clog up the oil filter making it more difficult for your liquid gold to stay clean. Replacing parts usually means a trip to the mechanic’s shop and extra money out of your pocket. It could also mean the engine giving out sooner than you would want it to. It is the most important maintenance you can perform for your vehicle. It is recommended to schedule a change every 3k to 5k thousand miles if you fill up with conventional. If you have filled up with synthetic, then every 7k to 10k miles is the recommended range. Regardless, make sure to regularly check the levels in your engine to make sure you have enough circulating throughout the parts of your automobile.
What is the Easiest Way to Get an Oil Change?
A new and anticipated app called Car Swaddle is available for download now in the Apple Store and Google Play. You will be astonished by how simple and easy it is to use and how fast and affordable their services are. The business model is similar to other ‘shared economy’ companies like Uber, Lyft, and Airbnb. It contracts jobs out to insured technicians that come to you, change your oil, and leave your automobile ready for the road for the next several thousand miles. Scheduling a visit is as simple as downloading it from either App Store or Google Play, choosing a time for a technician to come to your location, then handing the keys over for speedy work. After the job is finished, they will return the keys, and you can leave them a rating. Ratings are especially useful because it keeps everyone up to a high standard of work.
What Else Do I Need to Check in My Car?
Besides those regular checks that are helpful to do as you fill up. It will be useful to keep track of how many miles it has been since you have changed your transmission, brake, and steering fluids. Your owner’s manual will give you information on how often you need to change those fluids out. If you recently bought the automobile, then it might be worth taking it to a mechanic to look at how well the fluids look. While it is in the shop, have the mechanic also look at the brakes.