Tips For Proper Auto Maintenance
In our last blog, we gave you four car maintenance tips to help keep your car running longer. Continuing down that road, here are four other tips on auto maintenance that are very important for your vehicle’s longevity, and will help you maintain safe vehicle operations on an everyday basis.
Tip #5: Maintain your brakes and rotors (or drums).
Brake systems are intended to wear over time, and will require new pads and machining of rotors in order to maintain sufficient braking power. As brake pads wear, they become thinner. When they are 1-2mm, they will hit a wear bar that creates a noise(squealing), and you will know that it is time to replace the brake pads. With heat and wear, the rotors (metal plates that the pads ride against) can become warped, and therefore will require machining in order to restore a solid, flat surface on which the brake pads work. Be aware that the squealing sound may go away, which doesn’t mean that they do not need attention, but instead are past the wear bars, and actually are in metal-to-metal contact, which can destroy the rotors (lots more $$ to replace).
Tip #6: Tire Maintenance
Maintaining correct tire pressure (written on every driver’s side door panel) and rotating tires on a regular basis (every 5000 miles) will make a big difference in the longevity of your tires. Take a look at the wear pattern of your tires by turning your steering wheel prior to stopping, so that you can easily see the tire surface – are they wearing more on the inside or outside edge of the tire, or are they showing more wear on the center section of the tire tread? If so, they should be rotated and/or a 4-wheel alignment may be indicated. If your steering wheel is pulling to the side, or if you know you hit some pot holes or curbs, you are probably due for an alignment and possibly a tire re-balance.
Tip #7: Maintaining your Steering and Suspension Systems
Proper maintenance on your vehicle’s steering and suspension systems includes the adjustment of components and the replacement of worn-out or physically damaged parts. Just like other systems on your vehicle, the complexity and sophistication of your car’s suspension and steering systems requires specialized equipment and highly trained technicians to keep you driving straight and smooth. Bushings, bearings, struts, shocks, tie-rod ends, U-joints, pumps, pulley tensionsers, serpentine belts, steering racks…the list goes on…they all wear out with time, and require repair or replacement. If you notice or suspect that something sounds or feels different, ask your Honest Accurate Technician to go on a test drive. That way both of you will be hearing or feeling (and chasing) the same problem.
Tip #8: Interior and Exterior Cleaning.
Maintain the value of your car, by washing the exterior of your car frequently, especially during the winter months when de-icing chemicals are being used on the roads. A good coat of wax twice a year will make washing your car a lot easier! Use good floor mats to protect your carpet, and vacuum frequently to remove dirt and food particles. Rodents will be drawn to crumbs and can create havoc in your electrical systems, so keeping your car clean can save you money in the long run! Using your favorite vinyl/plastic protectant will help protect those surfaces from sun damage and eventual cracking.
Following the eight tips we’ve been discussing won’t guarantee your faithful steed will never fail you, but…follow these tips on auto maintenance faithfully and you can be assured your vehicle will perform as designed and your catastrophic breakdowns will be kept to a minimum. To schedule an appointment for proper Colorado Springs auto repair, be sure to contact Honest Accurate Auto Service today!