TIPS, TRICKS AND MECHANIC’S SECRETS
Maintaining your vehicle regularly and according to your owner’s manual, can give you years more use out of it. Following are a list of tips and suggestions to help you take care of your vehicle so it takes care of you.
- If you don’t know what type of oil you need for your vehicle, check your oil cap. The oil type and weight is usually stamped on there or on your dip stick in most current vehicles.
- The type of transmission fluid to use in your vehicle is usually either written on the dip stick handle or on the dip stick itself.
- When your mechanic changes out the belt in vehicle , hang onto the old one and keep it in your trunk. If you should bust a belt you have a back- up that you or the tow truck driver can put on and it will get you at least to a repair shop.
- Most newer vehicles don’t require an oil change every 3,000 miles because of the new fuel injected motors the oil doesn’t get as dirty as quickly as it used to. Typically an oil change every 5,000 miles is fine but do check your manufacturer’s owner’s manual for their recommendations.
- Changing your transmission fluid every 25,000 miles can help prevent costly repairs and keep your transmission in good working order much longer.
- Failure to change a dirty air filter can end up costing you more in fuel. The best way to test an air filter is to shine a flashlight through it – if the filter is not as translucent as a lamp shade you probably need a new filter.
- Neglecting to replace your fuel filter can prematurely wear out your fuel pump and create engine performance problems. Because the fuel filter is underneath the car it is not easily seen or noticed. Also newer vehicles go longer periods between tune ups and the fuel filter is often overlooked. Have your mechanic check your fuel filter once a year to be on the safe side.
- Your cooling system and/or radiator should be flushed once every four years. Over time coolant can become acidic and can end up doing serious damage to your gaskets and overall integrity of your cooling system as well as shorten the life of other parts like hoses, belts and your radiator. Further, you should not mix different types of engine coolants because they can also do serious cooling system damage. Always check with your mechanic about what is the proper coolant to use in your cooling system.
- Most newer vehicles have cabin air filters, which filter the outside air coming into your car. When a cabin air filter gets dirty and plugged up it can greatly affect your air conditioning and heating performance. As a rule have it checked once a year and more often if you travel frequently on or near unpaved roads where there is a lot of loose dirt and dust.
- On newer vehicles, auto manufacturers have switched to international symbols to mark parts of your engine. For example the windshield washer fluid receptacle has a picture of a wiper; your oil cap has a picture of an oil can and so forth. these things are located – by identifying the symbols