If you had been driving before moving out, there is a high chance that your parents were the ones doing car maintenance. Also, they are surely the ones who tell you when is the right time to take the car out for car washing or changing oil. However, now things are different, as you finally have the first car that you can call your own.
Most of the first-time car owners make mistakes due to simply not being able to recognize the problem with their cars. The reason is, of course, lack of experience, which you surely are trying to cope with. Thus, we figure that we can help you out by collecting the Top tips from dads to keep your car good condition. Ready, car owners? Let’s hit the road!
7 tips from dads to keep your car good condition
1. Be Patient with the Break-In Period
The break-in period is what we call the interval you must go through so that the parts can “get to know each other more”. As you may know, there is no limit-testing allowed during this time frame, so it may be a little bit boring.
Nonetheless, the break-in period is, no doubt, the most vital time for your new car. Thus, if you want your car to start out with the best possible condition, we recommend that you keep it down. To be more specific, you should not exceed 55 miles per hour (mph) through the first 1000 miles.
Also, it is best if you can avoid allowing the car to idle for long intervals during the break-in period. Basically, the engine oil pressure that idling generates will not send oil to every part of the engine, which is bad.
Furthermore, we believe that using only light and medium accelerations and keeping your car moving while the engine stays under 3000 rpm during the first few hours can ease things up.
2. Be Careful With Every Drive
Being considerate with the car should extend through the break-in, as it will lessen the time a vehicle owner has to see a mechanic. Thus, here are some of the things you should keep in mind each passing day.
First of all, you should not, under any circumstance, race the engine of your car during start-up. Essentially, doing so is a quick route to add many years of wear to the engine. This is especially true if the weather is cold.
Secondly, it is best for the engine if you can accelerate slowly as you start the car. After all, the drivetrain and engine gets worn the most during the first 10 or 20 minutes of driving. Thus, stick with this car maintenance tip and your 4-wheel partner will be in good shape.
Furthermore, you should not believe in the myth of warming your engine through leaving it idle in your driveway. The engines not working at the peak tempt means there will be oil contamination, soot deposits, incomplete fuel combustion, etc. As a result, you will have lots of damaged components on your hand.
Moreover, you can put less pressure on the engine as well as automatic transmission through simply shifting to neutral while waiting for green lights. Otherwise, your engine will still work on pushing the car despite it needing to stop, wearing itself out.
Finally, we suggest that you avoid short drives as much as possible. Ultimately, all of the wear and tear to the engine happens during the first few minutes of your driving trip. Thus, doing numerous errands at once will surely keep the engine happy for a long time.
3. Only Buy Gas from Reputable Stations
Gas is something that you will always have to deal with as long as you are driving a car. Being the bloodline of a car, things can be bad if you pump dirty gas into your engine. For example, dirty fuel can cause the engine to misfire, making the motor feel as if it is sputtering.
So, this is another dad tip of significant importance, remember to ask whether the gas is filtered or if the station changes its pump filters regularly. Once you get an unclear answer, do not hesitate and go to another gas station. You need to rinse and repeat until you find one that you can trust and then stay with it for the rest of your vehicle’s life.
4. Do Not Fill Up After Seeing the Tanker
On a clear day, you go out to fill your car, and see a gas tanker at your favorite station. In this situation, our recommendation is that you should come back the next day or go to another station if it is urgent.
The reason is that the process of filling the station’s underground tanks can stir up sediment all over the place. Consequently, sediment will go along with the gas into your engine, clogging fuel injectors as well as fuel filters. And when this actually does come to pass, we are afraid that regular maintenance tips would not be able to save your travelling buddy.
5. Be Easy On the Car While You Are Stuck
Getting stuck in snow or mud is something each and every single one of us vehicle owners undergoes at least once during our journey. Thus, you need to learn to calm down and not make it worse through damaging some expensive components while trying to get out.
From our experiences, gently rocking the car is fine, but you should not keep doing so if you are really stuck. Essentially, throwing the car repeatedly from forward to reverse and spinning the tires quickly can generate lots of heat. Hence, your differentials, clutches, and even transmissions will have issues.
6. Lighten Up the Keychain
Lots of inexperienced drivers bundle their car keys together with a dozen of other keys. As a result, the car key will have quite a heavy additional load on it while hanging on the ignition. This weight when combined with the bouncing while driving will wear out the ignition’s tumbler, eventually resulting in ignition switch failure.
Our dad tip for this is plain and simple: Stop being so unkempt! Give your car key a proper home in your pocket where it does not need to share with any roommate. When it is in its tip top shape, so will your car.
7. Park in the Shade
We all know that a garage is undoubtedly the single best location to park a car. However, these areas are not always readily available for your car, so sometimes you will have to make do with parking outside. In this situation, parking in the shade can minimize the damage from heat and UV sunlight to the car’s interior such as the car seat.
After reading through these 7 tips from dads to keep your car good condition, we hope that you can now meet the mechanic less. All in all, acute observation and proper application of these maintenance tips will surely help to extend the life of your car and keep it in top shape.
Mike Cross is the founder of AutoGuysLand. He’s a Tech guy who has a passion for car repair, car audio, and car camping.