Ford ran a commercial this year that asks “Who’s in better shape- you, or your car?” While most of the responders in the commercial admitted to having spent more time on their cars than on themselves, it’s not always obvious just how to take good care of your car. The best route is to stay consistent with maintenance and check-ups in order to preemptively eliminate as many problems as possible, but with so many parts of the car to worry about, where should you even begin? Whether you’re driving a brand new Ford or a used car that’s been around the block a few times, check out our list of quick and easy ways to protect the longevity of your car:
- Get your oil changed regularly. Sure, it’s always a hassle and nobody likes to do it, but making sure you change your oil regularly is the best way to increase the lifespan of the engine.
- Rotate and align your tires. This is the best way to ensure that the tires are functioning to their full potential, especially in New Orleans where the uneven or construction-plagued roads can wear down on even the most cutting edge new car. The best rule of thumb is to rotate your tires every time you get your oil changed, which equates roughly to every 7,500 miles or six months. Additionally, making sure your tires are properly inflated can boost your car’s fuel economy.
- Checking your brakes. Although commonly overlooked, brakes are one of the most crucial components for the safety of the driver and the vehicle. A few signs that it may be time to get your brakes checked are if the car emits a high pitched squeal when braking, if the car has a “pull” to the left or right when driving, or if there is a pulsing or vibrating under normal braking circumstances.
- Inspect lights. Have all lights, front and back, inspected with every oil change to make sure they are functioning properly.
- Don’t neglect routine engine checks and tune ups. Usually your car will need an engine tune up every year or 10,000-12,000 miles, whichever comes first. Not only will this help maximize fuel economy, it will also reduce the likelihood of having to replace emission system components which can be quite expensive.
Although this is not a comprehensive list of car upkeep procedures, it is a solid framework for both new cars and used cars to make sure the basics of your car upkeep regimen are being met. Not only will properly maintaining your vehicle ensure safety for the driver and passengers, it will also help save money by helping to eliminate costly procedures that result from negligence.by