Winter can be a troublesome time for car owners. Darker driving conditions and unpleasant weather can affect everything, from car performance to the potential for accidents. That’s why it’s so important to ensure that your car is running smoothly at this time of year. A well maintained vehicle will be more pleasurable to drive and will also help to keep you safer on the roads.
How to keep your car running smoothly
Regularly check the transmission
It’s the transmission that enables the car to move by transferring energy from the engine to the wheels. Make sure this essential function can run smoothly by regularly checking the levels of transmission fluid.
Look after the engine
Any traditional petrol or diesel car relies heavily on its engine, which can also undergo some strenuous wear and tear. Regular engine maintenance will include checking the spark plugs, assessing the way that the PCV valve is operating and ensuring that all the filters are functioning well (e.g. air filter and fuel filter).
Educate yourself about the engine and the oil
Most people understand that the engine needs oil and that that this needs to be changed regularly, around every 3,000 miles. However, the way you drive your car may also impact on how you need to manage the engine and the oil. For example, you might need to change the oil more regularly if you’re driving in conditions where you’re frequently stopping and starting the engine or if you’re towing something heavy.
Check the car’s emissions
The system for removing emissions from the car is all underneath the vehicle, which means it can take a lot of heavy impact from road surfaces or weather. Make sure you have this checked once a year to ensure that it’s functioning and in tact.
Carry out regular battery maintenance
Another essential component in the smooth running of any car, the battery needs to be regularly checked to make sure it’s secure and not vibrating, that connections are clean and that the water is at the right level.
Ensure the air conditioning is fully functioning.
The car’s air conditioning system delivers warmth in winter and cool in summer – have this regularly checked so that at least driving conditions inside the car are controlled.
Check your manual for a brake maintenance schedule
Different cars may require different approaches – stick to the schedule for your specific make and model to avoid expensive repairs further down the line.
Know what to look out for when it comes to brake problems.
For example, grinding sounds may mean you need new brake pads.
Get a mechanic to check the cooling system
They will look for wear and tear to hoses, coolant levels and dirty coolant fluid in the system needs to be replaced by clean.
Get your suspension inspected regularly
Especially if you’re noticing problems, such as steering vibrations or unusual noises when driving, it might be time to get a mechanic to do a full suspension and steering check.
Keep your car running smoothly this winter with these 10 tips and enjoy a better (and safer) driving experience.
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