Routine Car Maintenance: 5 Issues to Watch Out For Help extend the life of your vehicle.

By November 28, 2018General

Getting regular checkups for your car is akin to getting your annual physical at the doctor it helps spot potential issues before they’re problematic and costly. Oil changes and tire rotations are the obvious things to address with routine car maintenance. But what other parts need to be examined?

When in doubt, check your owner’s manual for more information.

routine car maintenance air filters

What they do: The engine air filter prevents harmful debris, dirt and contaminants from entering your engine. Cabin air filters help remove particles that enter your vehicle through the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system.

Why get them checked: You may be familiar with what happens when a home’s furnace filter is dirty and how the restricted airflow affects the furnace’s ability to properly heat the entire house. Your car’s engine faces a similar struggle when it has a dirty air filter. You might not think to check the filter when your car seems to be running fine, but a clogged air filter can affect your acceleration. A dirty cabin air filter won’t be effective at cleaning the air that you breathe while driving which could impact your allergies. Both filters should be a part of your routine car maintenance.
routine car maintenance fluids

What they do: The power steering, brake, cooling and other fluids used by your car play a crucial role in your personal safety and your vehicle’s reliability. Fluids help keep the engine parts lubricated so they run smoothly, make the steering wheel turn easily and much more.

Why get them checked: Properly maintaining the fluids in your car can improve fuel economy and longevity. In addition to verifying your car’s fluids are at the proper levels, an experienced technician can make sure the color and clarity are appropriate for each specific fluid. For example, engine coolant is typically green, but it fades as it loses potency, which could lead to an overheated engine.

routine car maintenance battery

What it does: It helps start your engine and powers your car.

Why get it checked: A dead battery means your car won’t start. A typical car battery lasts three to five years, but there are drains on the battery even when the engine is off, especially from alarm and aftermarket stereo systems. Summer heat can also reduce the life of your battery. Corrosion on a battery’s terminals signals a problem, but even if the battery looks OK and seems to be running well, it could be nearing the end of its life. Have it tested whenever you take your vehicle in for routine car maintenance especially in summer and winter.

routine car maintenance brake pads

What they do: They provide the friction that helps to slow and stop your vehicle.

Why get them checked: Knowing when to replace brake pads is easy, right? When you hear them squeal, take your vehicle to the shop. Well, it’s not that simple. Although brake pads are designed to squeal when they need to be replaced, brake-pad problems (such as uneven wear) can occur even when the brakes are silent and seem to work well. A certified auto technician has both the experience and the tools needed to check them properly as part of your routine car maintenance.

routine car maintenance belts and hoses

What they do: Belts help power various features throughout your car. Hoses carry liquids and gases throughout your car they even help route engine vacuum to numerous parts.

Why get them checked: When a belt fails, the component it was powering immediately ceases to work. This can result in something relatively benign, such as no air conditioning, or something much more serious, such as a power steering loss. Hoses fail when they leak or burst. Unchecked, they can cause engine damage or even a fire. While you can visually inspect your car’s belts and hoses, an experienced auto technician can identify problems you might miss during a routine car maintenance check, such as a slipping serpentine belt that can damage the engine accessories it powers.


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Denise Nunez

Author Denise Nunez

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2901 SW 72nd Ave - Miami, FL 33155 - Phone: 305-262-0002
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