Crashing your car on that pole isn’t the only way to wreck your ride and spend thousands of dollars on car repair. You’d be surprised that sometimes even a seemingly simple mistake can drain your bank account. Here are some of those mistakes that you should definitely try to avoid.
1. Failing To Change Oil And Filters And Other Simple Maintenance
If you think you’re saving money by passing up on basic maintenance like oil and filter change, think again. Because what you refused to pay for now, means thousands of dollars in auto repair bills tomorrow due to major damage or malfunction.
2. Driving On Bald Or Under/Over Inflated Tires
This means they shouldn’t be overinflated nor underinflated. Otherwise they’ll wear out faster than they typically should and will affect vehicle handling and fuel economy. To avoid this, check your owner’s manual for recommended tire pressure and always stick to that. It’s best to check your tires’ pressure at least once a month but do it more often if you always go on long trips or you carry heavy loads all the time.
We’re all guilty of this sometimes. It’s either we’re too busy or we simply assume it’s nothing serious. But this habit is actually the reason we get ambushed with major problems. If you listen to your car when it’s whispering, you won’t have to hear it scream.
4. Driving On Fumes
When cars had carburetors, you could drive them until all the gas was gone, refuel, and drive again with no problem. However, cars nowadays are mostly fuel injected engines that rely on in-tank electric pumps that use the gas to cool and lubricate their components. With these kinds of cars, driving on fumes can lead to pump failure which can be a very costly repair.
5. Roaming Around With Burned-Out Lights
This may seem not as important but driving in the middle of the road with your horns or lights not working, or the signal transmission failing may lead to accidents and other problem. Do not take this for granted.
6. Attempting To Jump Start Without Knowing How
Putting jumper cables in your trunk doesn't mean you automatically know how to jump-start a car. If you don't use jumper cables properly, you can fry your car ... or yourself. Though the procedure is really simple, you should learn how to do it before you actually need to. Not standing on the side of the highway while reading this article on your phone. That's dangerous.
7. Haphazard Electric Work
You’d be wise to leave electrical repairs to the expert, except from replacing fuse or relay. Run-of-the-mill electrical repairs are so intricate that one mistake can make more things go haywire.
8. Sloppy Lube Job
Every latching, pivoting, suspension and locking component you find in your car needs to be lubricated. This is one important form of preventive maintenance that is often overlooked but should be a mandatory part of any routine service stop. Don’t wait until something is stuck and won’t budge because they’re already corroded.
9. Forgetting To Tighten The Oil Filter
It’s important to have the right size wrench to remove and replace your oil filter -- if the wrench wraps around the canister too loosely, it might feel like you're cranking hard without actually making any progress. If you switch filter types, your old wrench might not work anymore. Make sure you check the fit before you leave the parts counter.
10. Not Taking The Time To Inspect Your Car
Just do a run down once in a while, check how the tires, lights, is there any kind of strange sound when you drive it, or anything out of ordinary at all. Spotting irregularities early on could save your car from serious damage in the future and a lot of money on car repair. A noise or smell from your car may be trivial, but you should always get it checked out to be on the safe side.