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How to Extend the Life of Your Car

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How to Extend the Life of Your Car

[img][/img] My car :xixi: With rising gas prices and very costly repairs, the last thing you want to worry about is if and when your car is going to break down. Here's how to protect your investment, and get from Point A to Point B as reliably as possible. 1. [b]Read the car's manual and schedule maintenance accordingly. [/b] Keeping up with your car's recommended maintenance schedule can help avoid costly problems with your cooling system, drivetrain, suspension and other components; following the recommended schedule also helps ensure you the get the full benefit of the manufacturer's warranty. [img][/img] 2. [b]Drive less.[/b] Especially, avoid short trips. Cold starts are hard on engines, your gas mileage, and the environment. Short trips can also significantly shorten the life of your muffler. [spoiler]Basically, you get condensation in the exhaust when you start a cold engine, and if you don't run the car for long enough to evaporate all of the condensation out of the system, excessive amounts of water can accumulate in your muffler, and rust a hole through it. Avoid starting a cold car just to pull it into the garage, for instance. Consider walking to the nearest store for a change. Combine short errands, and, if you have multiple vehicles, drive the one more recently driven when you go out again. Do drive a car at least every week or so, since cars that sit for longer than a week or two at a time have other problems, such as fluids gradually draining out of systems. Consult a mechanic if you will store a car for an extended period.[/spoiler] [img][/img] 3. [b]Check the fluids.[/b] You should check the level of your antifreeze, oil, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and brake fluid, very regularly: like every time you buy gas. Even if your car doesn't leak fluids, it can develop a leak and quickly have a dangerously low level of something. [img][/img] 4. [b]Change the oil regularly[/b]. This will improve your gas mileage and protect your engine. The recommended mileage between oil changes is 3,000 - 5,000 miles (or 5000 - 8000 kilometres) or every 3 to 6 months. [spoiler]Doing this could make it possible for your vehicle to attain 200,000 miles. Change the oil filter as well - there is no sense in putting clean oil through a dirty filter, and filters are very cheap and available at any parts store. Please check your service manual, or contact your dealer for your car's specific needs.[/spoiler] [img][/img] 5. [b]Change the air filter[/b] This is something you can do easily at home without using tools, and should be done approximately every 12 thousand miles. You can buy a matching filter at nearly any auto parts store and your owner's manual will show you where your air filter is located. A dirty, dusty filter can lower gas mileage. [img][/img] 6. [b]Flush these fluids every two years.[/b] Power steering fluid, brake fluid, and cooling system anti-freeze. Check this timetable against your owner's manual. Newer cars generally allow longer intervals between changes.[spoiler]Change transmission fluid & filter at least every 50,000 miles (40k to 45k is even better). If you have gone over 50,000 miles without a change, on many transmissions, it is best to NOT change it and hope for the best. Often putting new transmission fluid in a trans that has too many miles on the fluid will actually cause problems because it can break down 'varnish' and other gums/solids that have built up in the trans due to over-used fluid.[/spoiler] [img][/img] 7. [b]Monitor your brake pad thickness [/b]and don't let the pads wear down to metal - this will cause damage to your brake rotors ("discs") at least and possibly your calipers as well.l. Rotors and calipers are much more expensive to replace than pads. There is no such thing as "cleaning" a brake pad while it is still on a car - the friction between the pad and rotor will eradicate any outside substance almost immediately. [img][/img] 8. [b]Rotate the tires[/b] Changing tire position is very important and reduces uneven wear and tear on the tread, thus extending the life of the tires. [spoiler]The recommended rotation cycle is twice a year or every 6,000 miles. Rotate them diagonally - front right to rear left and front left to rear right. However, this pattern can change depending on the drivetrain of the vehicle, and the type of tire. Your vehicle manual will contain detailed rotation information. Keep in mind some tires (especially on sports cars) are directional and are meant to spin only one way. They will have a large arrow on the sidewall to indicate this.[/spoiler][img][/img] 9. [b]Keep the tires inflated.[/b] Under-inflated tires can reduce the tire life by 15% and will slightly decrease your gas mileage, perhaps by 10%. [spoiler]Inflating tires is perhaps the easiest of all activities, and many stores sell tire gauges for a very small cost. Checking your tire pressure every other time you get gas will reduce tire wear and prevent these issues. Monitor your tire tread with a penny. Insert the penny into the tread with Lincoln's head down. If the top of his head is not obscured by the tread, your tires need to be replaced. Basically, if you can see all of Lincoln's head, you must replace your tires.[/spoiler] [img][/img] [b]Do you do all the above to extend the life of your car? Share some of your ideas or experiences. [/b]

Last edited by sj0405 (2012-05-13 21:45:42)

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Re: How to Extend the Life of Your Car

I wish I have a car so that I can apply this tips :xixi:
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Re: How to Extend the Life of Your Car

Great advice but most people don't follow them :p
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Re: How to Extend the Life of Your Car

when going on a trip or simple driving always remember this. BLOWBAG check the following, B-battery L-lights O-oil W-water B-brakes A-air G-gas of course :xixi: simple steps yo!

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