Vehicles are a sizeable investment today, regardless of the make/model of your car, truck, or SUV. You maintain your home and take care of it, so why wouldn’t you treat your car with the same respect? Like any other machinery or equipment, proper maintenance and care is key to making your vehicle look and perform its best for years to come. As a trusted Kansas City auto body and collision repair shop, we have a few tips on how NOT to treat your vehicle if you want it to last longer and retain its value.
Ignore warning lights on the dash. You may think it’s just a malfunction and nothing to worry about. Maybe you cross your fingers the light will go off, and go on about your business. The fact is, warning lights are designed for a reason – to indicate that something is wrong or needs to be checked. When the ABS, oil, check engine, or other light comes on pay attention. It's better to have it checked out now than to wait or incur even more extensive (and costly) damage.
Conveniently forget to check and/or replace air filter. A clogged or dirty air filter can cause a plethora of problems, including increased fuel consumption and emissions issues; it can also affect the operation of your engine. Replace the air filter regularly – it’s a simple task, and an air filter is fairly cheap.
Don’t change the oil until your vehicle sends a warning. How do you know if the oil is low if you never check it? A vehicle that’s low on oil will run hotter; in addition, the smooth flow of oil may be blocked if sludge should form on moving components. Make it a practice to check the oil every time you fuel up. If it’s a smidgeon low, top it off until it’s time for the next oil change.
Don’t put gas in the tank until it’s nearly empty. You may wonder what’s wrong with doing this? While we’ve all been guilty of waiting until we’re nearly running on fumes, it’s not a good practice. Running on empty puts stress on the fuel pump, and can actually cause an electric pump to seize up or overheat as fuel cools the fuel pump and also acts as a lubricant. Fill ‘er up!
Let the dust, dirt, and road grime build up. If you’re one of those who never take the time to wash your car, time to change your habits! It’s not just about pride and how your car looks, it’s about removing corrosive materials and preventing rust. Brake dust, salt, even tree sap and bird droppings can really do damage. Give your car a good wash at least once a month, preferably more often.
At Prestige Auto KC, we’re the experts in auto body repair, painting, and dent removal in the Kansas City area. A car is a big investment – take care of it and it will take care of you!