Basic Car Maintenance You Should Learn to do Yourself

By: Kris LeSueur   |   30 May 2022

A car is probably the biggest purchase you will ever make in life, next to a house. And the price tag is not a joke. So when it comes to maintaining it, priorities must be set straight. 

It’s true that you cannot DIY your way around some things that relate to your car. It must be your trusted mechanic that handles this. However, there is basic car maintenance that any car owner can do. 

A benefit of learning car maintenance yourself is you save time and money. The time you will spend driving to your mechanic can be spent somewhere else instead. At the same time, safety. A number of accidents happen when car owners failed to do a basic maintenance check on their cars resulting in accidents. 

Washing

This has to be the easiest and the most basic of them all. Simply dedicating time to keep your car in top shape will go a long way. For watching your car, though, there are some things you should keep in mind. 

Use a microfiber cloth and soap made for cars. Use a soft water pressure source if you want to avoid leaving residue spots. If you only have access to a power washer or a high-pressure source, it is better you drive to a DIY car wash for that well-needed wash. 

Checking tire pressure

Some drivers are used to their cars being in top shape that they do not get to practice giving it a check before driving off. Driving on low-pressure tires can damage the tire wall. And in the worst-case scenario, it can lead to a blowout. 

To avoid this, make it a habit to check the tire tread and pressure regularly. And here, regularly means doing it within a schedule. The easiest to do is monthly. Always check your spare tire, especially before a long drive/trip.

Changing battery

Batteries should last around 3 to 5 years. However, your driving habits, the weather, and maintenance can make your car battery’s lifespan shorter. 

When checking your battery, the first thing you should look at is the terminals. Just make sure that they are free of dirt, and of course, corrosion. If you spot corrosion, this can easily be addressed sign an old toothbrush, some baking soda, water, and a wrench for disconnecting the terminals. 

Be sure to wear the required safety equipment, in this case, safety gloves and eye protection go a long way to protect your well-being. The acid from your car’s battery can cause skin burns. The car must be turned off. Then, proceed to remove the negative lead from the battery.  Make a mixture of hot water and baking soda and apply it to the battery terminal. Let it soak for a little bit and then scrub it off carefully. Reattach the negative lead to the battery. Repeat this on the positive terminal. 

These are very basic maintenance habits to do for your car. You can also learn how to do other maintenance checks that are more advanced than this. For total beginners, these are perfectly fine and can already save you time and some money.

 

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