Keep More Money In Your Pocket By Learning Car Maintenance

by Hank

Shady Tree MechanicIt seems, nowadays, that automobiles depreciate more rapidly. Because car manufacturers have included more computers and gadgets in cars, people are more lax about performing preventative maintenance. Gone are the days of the shady tree mechanic thanks to the onboard computers and other advances. Preventative car maintenance is one of the most crucial elements when it comes to owing a vehicle. Just because the economy is not as strong as it once was does not mean you should not focus on a regular maintenance program for your automobile. Now, more than ever, you should focus on keeping your current car running instead of buying a new one. For example, you should have your oil changed once every three months. Don’t put off such small tasks as they can turn into major repair bills later.

Refer to your Owner’s Manual Often

One of the best reference manuals you can read with respect to keeping your car in good running order is your owner’s manual. Because each make and model of car is built a little differently, the owner’s manual is a valuable resource. Manuals can visually show you, step by step, how to care for your car.

Checking the Alignment

With respect to steering, it’s important to have your car aligned on a regular basis. Alignment means that every wheel on your vehicle is aligned so you can keep the car straight while steering. To check your car’s alignment, gradually drive forward in a straight line without touching the steering column. Of course, you should make sure that you are going slower than a snail if you don’t want to incur further expense by running into something. Choose a deserted parking lot for your experiment and don’t go above five miles per hour. Typically, if you don’t have a manual transmission, you won’t even have to press down on the accelerator. Should your car not make any headway without moving to the left or right, then you’ll need to see a mechanic and have the alignment fixed.

How Alignment Affects Mileage

Of course, you may wonder how your car’s tendency not to drive in a straight line affects mileage. Because it is more efficient to get to your destination without distraction, so to speak, moving in a straight line reduces the distance you’re covering when you are driving. If a car is out of alignment, it will slightly swerve back and forth. Therefore, you’ll accumulate more mileage.

Check Your Tire Pressure

The rotation of your tires can add to the mileage too. Therefore, it’s important to make sure they have the right amount of pressure. Because it takes a certain amount of gas to make your tires rotate, if they don’t have enough air pressure, your car will use more gasoline to turn the wheels around the axle. Check your owner’s manual then for the correct tire pressure. Also, keep a tire gauge handy to measure the air pressure once a week. Of course, you don’t want too much air pressure in your tires either or you run the risk of having a blowout. While not enough pressure will cause you to use more gas, too much pressure can be a safety hazard. Therefore, it’s vital that you check your tire pressure routinely.

While cars are more technology advanced now more than ever, you can still benefit from knowing a little bit about preventative maintenance in order to save you money. The economy makes it more important than ever to save your money by continuing to drive your current car instead of buying a new one. These tips will help you keep your car running longer and keep more money in your pockets at the same time.

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