Owning a car gives you the freedom to go where you want, when you want. However, owning a car also means that you have to keep your vehicle in good working order. By learning some of the basics of auto repair, you can make sure that your car is always running smoothly.
Take advantage of free inspections, but don’t just have them fix everything on the list. There will probably be one or two extra items added on that aren’t strictly necessary. If you are light on cash, ask the technician which items are the most important to keep the car running safely. Get these done immediately, and save up for the rest of the work.
Be wary of auto technicians who perform unneeded repairs on your vehicle. Work should never be performed without your permission, but a good mechanic may point out upcoming repairs that are necessary. Never take your vehicle to a mechanic that preforms unnecessary repairs.
Make sure you get a signed copy of the estimate for the repairs. You also need to make sure that the contract contains a clause that the shop must contact you before exceeding the total on the estimate. This will protect you from getting a surprise bill once work is completed.
Do not make the mistake of having someone fix your vehicle just because the amount they charge is cheaper than everyone else. Many times the low prices make up for the lack in quality work. Doing research on the repair shop in question will help you decide if that is the case here.
Take your vehicle to a full service car wash a couple times a year for an extensive cleaning, inside and out. This removes most of the soil and helps preserve the interior of your car. This can pay off when you want to sell or trade your car in for a newer one.
If you are planning a road trip, make sure that you go and have your car serviced. Plan it a little ahead so you are not rushing to get it done at the last minute. Even if your car feels fine, you want to make sure that you will make it to your destination and back with no issues.
Remember that DIY auto repair may be quite dangerous. Always get someone to be near you if an emergency were to happen. Purchase good quality tools that you do not have to worry about breaking. This is very important for the tools that you use to change your tires. The jack has to hold the car up without any trouble while you are working on the underside of the car. This is why it is wise for you to use quality hydraulic floor jacks and jack stands.
It is important to get a warranty on your car when it gets repaired. This is even more important if the parts put in are pricy. Ask the mechanic about warranties on these parts. Ask about the lentgh of time of the warranty and for a contract in writing to review it.
You should get your tires aligned and inflated on a regular basis. You can easily check the pressure and inflate them but you will probably need a professional to align them for you. Keep your tires in good shape will make handling your care easier and can even improve your gas mileage.
Once you’ve worked on the brakes, before you take them out to test them you should bleed them. After this, pump your brake fluid. Test for leaks to be sure the fluid won’t run out. You are then ready to test drive your car on roads that don’t have a lot of traffic. Go slowly at first until you’re certain your repair has been made properly.
Always get your timing belt repaired at the proper time, according to your tune-up schedule. A timing belt going out can cause major engine damage, leading to much bigger repairs. Those repairs can run into the thousands of dollars, so don’t ignore that timing belt – you may be sorry if you do!
Auto repair does not have to be as mysterious a subject as many mechanics make it sound. Once you understand some of the basics, you can make your own repairs at home without the inconvenience of taking your car into the shop. Use the tips you have just read to keep your car in good condition.