Your vehicle is an investment that keeps you on time and connected with the world, but every car requires a little TLC to run smoothly. You don’t have to be a seasoned mechanic to take care of some of the essential car maintenance tasks.

Save yourself some cash with these easy car maintenance tips can help you develop your own car care routine for a more reliable ride.

Check the Tires

Regular tire maintenance is an easy way to maximize gas mileage and keep your car on the road. Tires should be rotated every 6,000 to 8,000 miles, or at least once every six months.

The air pressure in each tire is also important. Use a pressure gauge to check the air pressure at least once monthly, and adjust the amount is air in each tire as needed.

While checking the air pressure, examine each tire for signs of wear. Replace tires that are worn or damaged immediately.

If you live in a region with very snowy winter weather, regular maintenance also includes switching to weather-appropriate tires at the beginning of each season.

Schedule an Annual Tune-Up

An annual tune-up is recommended to keep your car running smoothly. A tune-up usually includes basic maintenance, such as changing the spark plugs and oil in your car.

Identify Problems Early

Other basic engineer maintenance can vary depending on your car’s make and model. For example, a BMW tuning device for adjusting calibrations in a 3 Series allows you to make minor adjustments to your car’s engine.

Have your mechanic use a diagnostic scanner or code reader on your vehicle if you have unexplained problems that persist after your regular tune-up.

Fill the Fluids

Oil, transmission fluid and water are all necessary for a healthy engine. Check the fluid levels in your vehicle at least once monthly, and add antifreeze to your radiator before winter if you live in a region with freezing temperatures.

Refer to the vehicle’s owner’s manual to determine which type of oil, transmission fluid and antifreeze to use in your car.

Check the Lights

Regularly inspecting your headlights, taillights, parking lights and brake lights is a must. Your vehicle’s lighting system keeps you safer on the road, and properly working lights prevent traffic stops that may occur when you have a non-working bulb.

To check your lights, have someone assist you in turning each set of lights on while you inspect the car from both the front and back. Make sure to check both the bright and dim headlight settings during your inspection.

Monitor Warning Lights

You should also pay close attention to warning lights, such as the check engine light and temperature gauge. If one of the many warning lights in your instrument panel is illuminated, schedule an appointment with your mechanic as soon as possible.

Prompt repairs are the simplest way to keep your car running smoothly.

Notice Changes in Your Vehicle

Identifying potentially serious problems doesn’t always require a visit to your mechanic. Some issues are noticeable by observing changes in how your car sounds or feels while you are driving.

For instance, a slight pull to either the left or right may be a sign that it’s time to balance and rotate your tires.

Most maintenance is scheduled for every 5,000 miles, or once each year, but identifying problems before your scheduled tune-up is an important way to avoid unexpected repairs that leave you stranded.

With some basic care, you can have a smoothly operating, reliable vehicle.

Also read:  2014 Kia Forte Review: A Smart Choice that Won't Break the Bank

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