If you are one of those people who believe that getting a car simply means that you’ll be able to get to one place from another, while not having to know the first thing about how these machines actually work, then you are definitely in for some trouble. Vehicles need to be properly maintained and taken care of and the truth is that you never actually know when something unexpected might happen. What’s more, you might not know how to prevent those unexpected and unwanted situations from happening, simply because you are not well versed in car matters and, simply said, you don’t know your vehicle.
The simple truth is that you need to get prepared for maintaining your vehicle after finally getting it and that can take some skills. I know what you might be thinking right now. You’ll just take it to a mechanic, right? Well, while this is definitely the right thing to do, the point is that you will probably only think of a mechanic once you notice that there’s something wrong with your car and we are talking about maintenance and prevention here. Plus, there are some things that you can definitely do all on your own, meaning that there’s no need to waste your money on costly checkups and repairs when you can just learn how to take care of this machine alone.
Don’t worry, I’m not saying that you should turn into a mechanic here and that you need all the skills and the knowledge that they have. I’d never suggest you start tampering around things that are just too difficult for a regular person to do without the help of a professional. Yet, it would do both you and your vehicle good if you learned just a few simple tricks and steps you should take in order to, for example, check some fluids in your car without having to call in the experts right away. Since I have mentioned them, you might want to learn more about how to check those fluids.
In any case, the worst thing you can do is rely on somebody else and then continue driving without having a clue about what it is that’s going on inside your particular vehicle. You need to know at least some basic things if you want to be out on the road with the other drivers. If nothing else, having the peace of mind that comes with knowing how to inflate a deflated tire in case that happens in the middle of the road is reason enough why you should learn to do a few things alone.
As explained, I’m not expecting you to become a top-notch mechanic here. I’m simply saying that there are certain things that you should definitely learn to do all on your own and, the best part is, those things don’t require you to be an expert on vehicles. As long as you are committed and devoted enough, you will be able to learn a few simple trick and DIY tips that can be life-savers in certain instances. If nothing else, then you’ll at least save some money that you would probably spend on visiting a mechanic every once in a while.
The fact that you are here tells me that you are ready to learn, so that’s exactly what we are going to do today. So, keep on reading to get some useful DIY tips on how to maintain your car without the help of a professional. I’m sure that you’ll like doing some of this stuff, since learning new things is always a thrill. Plus, it’s really satisfying to know that you can take care of your own car and fix certain things without anyone’s help. Anyway, without further ado, let us check out those tips I have prepared for you.
How To Check Oil Levels
Checking engine oil is definitely not complicated and the simple truth is that everyone should learn how to do it. Sure, it might sound like you are doing something rather difficult, but, as it turns out, this is a pretty simple process that will take less than a few minutes, while giving you a peace of mind once you know that everything is in order and that you’ve done the checkup. So, let me explain how this simple process is done.
Basically, you’ll need to park your vehicle on a level surface and stop the engine. Make sure that the engine has been stopped for a couple of minutes before you proceed to checking the oil levels. Once those few minutes have passed, it’s time to pop up the hood and find the dipstick, the location of which can differ from vehicle to vehicle, meaning that you might want to get yourself a handbook if you aren’t sure how to find it.
After finding it, though, you should take it out and wipe the oil off with an old rag, so that it doesn’t drip all around. When you take a look at the dipstick, you will find marks that indicate both the lowest and the highest recommended levels of oil. Once you have seen those marks, you should put the dipstick back in and then draw it out again in order to see which particular level the oil reaches on the marks. It should be somewhere around the full mark and if it is low, that means it’s time for you to top it up simply by pouring in the oil that you have previously bought. It’s as simple as that.
How To Check Tire Pressure
You should already be aware of the fact that all tires lose air overtime, meaning that you need to perform this check frequently, in order to be sure that everything is running smoothly and that you don’t need to worry about your tire getting deflated mid-drive. Usually, you should do this once a month, but if you feel that you need to do it more often, nobody is stopping you. The problem is if you think that you don’t need to do it at all, since that is exactly what can lead to numerous issues and unexpected situations.
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t check the air pressure in your tires after you have spent some time driving your vehicle, or after it had been exposed to sun for a while. Instead, you should do this first thing in the morning, right there in your garage. Of course, you’ll need a tool to help you in this process, meaning that you should invest in an electronic pressure gauge and pumps that will definitely come in handy, not only because you’ll be doing this check often, but also because you might end up with a deflated tire at some point, which will require you to use the pump.
How To Inflate A Tire
Speaking of deflated tires, here’s another trick that you need to learn. If you end up with a deflated tire somewhere in the middle of the road, you could be up and driving again in a matter of minutes, just as long as you have the right tool. Basically, you need a pump to fill the tires if you notice that they have lost air. This is why a pressure gauge and a pump should always be a part of every driver’s toolbox and setup.
How To Check the Coolant Level
In addition to the oil that I have mentioned above, there is another important liquid that you need to frequently check. I’m talking about coolant. Performing this check is certainly not difficult. All you have to do is lift up the bonnet, find the coolant reservoir and make sure that the water inside is at an optimum level. If not, make sure to fill it up, which is also a pretty easy process.
How To Check Brake & Clutch Fluid Levels
It would also do you good to learn how to check the brake and clutch fluid levels, which is usually the same for both parts of the vehicle. Most likely, the reservoir will be made of see-through plastic and located on the rear of the actual engine bay. Your task is to check if the fluid is up to the correct level, which you can even do without opening the actual reservoir. You’ll only have to open it if you end up needing to add the fluid.