5 Things That Will Extend the Life of Your Next Car
Most people tell you that a car is one of the worst investments you can make. While that may be true, it doesn’t mean it’s not an important and necessary one, as it gets you where you need to go on a daily basis. Some cars will retain their value better than others, but, to ensure you get the most out of your vehicle, you’ll need to maintain it on a regular basis. Here are 5 things you should either do yourself or have done that will make your car run longer and help prevent costly repairs.
Keep a Maintenance Schedule: Follow the maintenance schedule in your car’s manual or look it up online and stick to it. Regular scheduled maintenance will have your car running and performing at its best, not to mention giving you peace of mind and one less thing to worry about.
Change the Oil: The oil & oil filter should be changed every 3,000 – 5,000 miles (for newer cars, you can get away with every 5k miles). Think of oil to your car as water is to humans. It’s the lifeblood of your engine. While you’re at it, replace the air filter too. Most oil change services will do this, but it’s also simple to do yourself.
Check, Flush and Change Fluids: While the oil is extremely important, it’s not the only fluid in your car that needs checking and maintenance. Transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, and coolant should be checked on a regular basis and flushed/changed according to your car’s maintenance schedule.
Rotate the Tires: This should be done according to the car’s manual or at least a couple times a year to ensure that all tires get even wear. It also helps with the car’s handling and can negatively affect the AWD system if not performed on regular basis.
Clean and Protect: Wash your car regularly, paying attention to the wheels and underside too as grime and dirt can accumulate there over time. To protect the paint, wax the exterior about every 3 months or at least twice a year. Keep the interior clean as well, removing trash and vacuuming under and in between seats. Protect your dash from the sun by getting a dash cover or a sun shade, and seat covers will prevent your leather or vinyl from wear and tear.
Most of these services are relatively inexpensive (even more so if you are able to do them yourself), especially in comparison to what you could be spending on repairs if you didn’t maintain your car regularly. Also, if you decide to sell your car in the future, you’ve ensured that your vehicle retains its maximum value and put more money in your pocket.