Your car is probably one of your most important possessions, since you depend on it to get you to and from work (among other places). Perhaps you’re not sure if you know enough about cars, but are willing to learn. This article can help you learn more, even enable you to do some maintenance tasks yourself.
Always keep and eye on the radiator to make sure that it is full. Simply run the engine a few minutes and then cut the engine and lift the hood. Don’t open your radiator cap if your car is on. Check the level of fluid in radiator and add any if necessary. Be mindful that some coolants are meant to be mixed with 50% water.
Only choose an A.S.E. certified mechanic. This kind of certification tells you that whoever will be working on your car has a couple years of experience and has passed a test. This tells you that the mechanic is qualified to work on your car.
Before giving your car keys to the service department, make sure you know what the cost for the repair will be. If you don’t understand something, ask questions until you do. You probably don’t want to incur extra charges after the car has been repaired.
Never underestimate the value of keeping an emergency car kit handy. You need to have tools in your kit that will allow you to change the battery, help you get some extra gas and tire changing tools as well. In the event that your car were to break down in the middle of the night on a deserted road, bring blankets, batteries, and a flashlight.
Inspect your vehicle to figure out what is wrong before taking it to an auto shop . You can save lots of money if you diagnose the problem on your own, and you may also be able to prevent yourself from being swindled. As you probably have heard in the past, some people that fix vehicles are lying so they’re able to get paid more.
Before you hand over your car to the shop, be sure you are clear about the repair costs. Have your mechanic or service adviser clarify all the details before agreeing to getting your vehicle fixed. This will give you a good idea of what you will be paying.
You should have a do-it-yourself repair kit in your car at all times. The tools you need include tire changing equipment, which usually come with a car. A car jack and a lug wrench are essential tools to have. You will need several screwdrivers, ratchets, socket wrenches, an adjustable wrench and a torque wrench. Don’t waste your money by purchasing cheap tools. Solid and sturdy tools are ideal so you don’t have to worry about them malfunctioning.
Do not hire a mechanic until you are sure they have experience with this particular make and model. If they have before, then they are likely going to be able to also fix your car easily enough.
Warranties serve an important purpose when your car is repaired, especially when you buy expensive parts. When the mechanic orders the parts, ask him about their warranty. Ask about the length of the warranty, and ask to be provided with a written copy of it.
You must wash your car to keep the rust away. Every car is going to rust in the future, but this can be delayed if you just get all of the chemicals and salt off your car when you can. Use a good wax to protect your paint job as much as possible.
If a mechanic claims that the car parts they provide will last forever, then do not buy them. This is usually a ploy to get more money from you. There are some cars that proclaim a “lifetime guarantee” for their transmission fluid: this is a perfect example. While you don’t have to change this a lot, you need to be sure it’s changed about every 80,000 miles.
Don’t leave valuables in your car while you’re having it repaired. To get the job done, mechanics may have to remove your things and if something should end up missing, they cannot be held responsible. Remove all items from your trunk too.
People tend not to read the manual for their car. It is important to read over the information in your manual and become acquainted with it. In it, the manufacturer informs you of the essentials for keeping your car in good running condition. It can even help you with simple repairs.
If there are two tools all cars should have, it is a jack and lug-nut wrench. With that, you also need an extra tire. They are included with most new vehicles. You do not want to stuck in the middle of nowhere and have to pay a ton of money for a tow. You do the job yourself with less time and expense.
Bleed your brakes after your work is done on them. Take the time to pump brake fluid too. Make sure there are no leaks causing you to lose valuable brake fluid . Now you can give the car a test drive when there is little traffic. Drive slowly at first so that you can ensure your repairs have been performed correctly.
Compare more than 3 estimates so that you can get the best deal on your repair. Most shops are reliable but some mechanics will find additional repairs to charge you more. Check out other options which are trustworthy. Such shops have a greater chance of knowing how to fix your car.
Original Equipment Manufacturer is a label you will find on parts issues or approved by manufacturers. Keep this in mind when you are having parts replaced on your vehicle. If you walk in and tell the mechanic that you want OEM parts, you will sound knowledgeable. There will be far less danger of receiving used parts.
A burned out headlight or taillight is a common repair. This can usually be done yourself. Some vehicles make it easier to do, but it’s cheaper than getting a mechanic to do it. Ask whether someone you know can show you how to fix it.
After paying a mechanic to replace an old part on your vehicle with a new one, ask him to give you back the one that he removed. If he cannot provide this, he may not have done anything with your car. This is a definite red flag and you should call him out on it.
Keep an accordion file in the car to keep receipts. Consider separating records by maintenance type or by year. Whichever method you choose, this will be helpful for mechanics when they need to make additional repairs. This plastic file is invaluable to you.
Don’t neglect wiper blades . If you notice your wiper blades leaving streaks on your windshield, or they chatter, then it is time to obtain new blades. Blades ought to be replaced annually or even more often than that in rainy regions.
Set cash limits on what car work can be done without specific authorization. Don’t let the mechanic make whatever repairs they want after your drop off your car. Inform them that they must contact you for approval before proceeding with any repairs over the stated dollar amount.
It is important not to neglect your car. Even knowing how to do simple maintenance may save you tons of money instead of going to a mechanic. Keep this advice in mind when your car next gives you trouble.
Consult with your friends and family about recommending a trustworthy mechanic. That helps you to find someone who truly does what they promise. It is better than taking your chances with a mechanic that no one you know has used before.
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