5 Important Things to Understand About Car Maintenance
Car maintenance is the absolute most important thing you can do to keep your car in its absolute best working condition. It doesn’t matter if your car is from a brand touted as reliable or one critics claim to be the most unreliable, as even the so-called “most reliable cars” can be done in by irregular maintenance or major repair delays.
To help you better understand the basics of car maintenance, here are five important things you need to know before you buy your next new or used car:
The Brand You Buy Does Matter
While anyone can kill a perfectly good car by not maintaining it properly, the brand you buy does actually matter when thinking about car maintenance. Some use specific types of oil, some require more frequent service trips, and some have service bills that would break the bank for many of us.
Before you buy a car, you should know how much an oil change in Latham, NY will cost you on average. Many brands can charge upwards of $150 for recommended maintenance every 5,000 to 10,000 miles due to their brand alone, while others may only charge $30 to $50 for that same service.
Replacement parts often need to be taken into consideration as well. Performance brakes, for instance, can cost triple or more what your standard brakes would cost to replace as part of a vehicle’s maintenance schedule. The question is, are you aware of the true cost of upkeep on your current vehicle or are you just driving through life blind?
Your Driving Habits Matter
One thing that most drivers don’t realize, or fail to remain aware of while driving, is that their habits behind the wheel can affect the cost of maintaining their vehicles.
The most obvious driving habit is the amount of driving done each day, but that tends to be out of our control. Commuters that travel 50 or more miles per day are going to need more frequent oil changes, tire replacement, brake replacement, and other major maintenance tasks completed before others.
On top of this, though, many drivers who accelerate quickly or brake quickly could be causing excessive wear to their tires and excessive wear on their brakes. If you’re guilty of one of those habits, you can mindfully stop them and likely save yourself plenty of money in the long run, as brakes and tires are not cheap by any stretch of the imagination.
Timing is Extremely Important
There’s a reason your manufacturer’s maintenance schedule is listed the way it is. Certain parts are made to last for a certain amount of time, and should be replaced accordingly in order for your vehicle to run at its best. There’s no conspiracy behind it, as it’s just a simple fact of owning a piece of machinery that relies on a lot of complicated moving parts to function as a whole.
By choosing to ignore the maintenance schedule, or a shop mechanic’s advice, you’re taking your car’s overall functionality into your hands. Sometimes it works out and you end up getting through to the next schedule maintenance time without any irreparable damage to your vehicle. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and many people end up on the side of the road calling AAA because a part of their vehicle fails catastrophically while they’re driving.
Not to scare you into maintaining your car properly, but those types of failures can and have led to serious accidents in the past. So when it comes to maintenance timing, please don’t mess around.
There is No Such Thing as a Perfect Car
While you’d probably like to think that following the advice on this page will prevent you from having any issue with your car, at least for the first 100,000 miles, right? Well, that’s unfortunately not the case, as this is not a perfect world and you do not own a perfect car. That simply does not exist, and may never exist.
Sometimes the smallest thing can cause part failures that no one could see coming. This is the price of owning one of the most advanced pieces of machinery the world has ever created.
As said in the beginning, someone with the most reliable of car in the world can face more trouble than another person who owns the most unreliable car in the world. Not all vehicles are created equal, and they all can’t be perfect. Some last less than 100,000 miles because they’re plagued by problems, while others go on to join the 300,000-mile club with little to no issues.
It Can Affect Resale Value
When you’re buying a used car, what’s one of the first things you look at on a car’s history report? First might be the number of owners, but the second is how it as maintained. If you can prove your car followed the vehicle’s schedule maintenance by the manufacturer, you can get more for it when you’re ready to upgrade or move on to a different vehicle.
Think about this the next time you decide you can go another 10,000 miles without replacing your timing belt, and don’t forget how bad it will look if you need major repairs because of issues a catastrophic part failure caused to surrounding areas of your vehicle.