If you want something to last long then you have to take care of it. However, with the busy lives that we all lead the last thing we think about is taking care of our cars. Sure, we make sure to get the oil changed every 5,000 miles or so, but we often forget about the other maintenance that needs to be done. Instead of spending thousands of dollars with a professional, there are a few maintenance items that can be done by anyone. Not only can this help your car to last longer, but it can also save you a lot of money in repair work down the road.
This might be the easiest car maintenance that you can do. It requires absolutely zero tools, and it is usually pretty easy to reach in every car. You’ll need to get a new air filter every year or every 12,000 miles. While a mechanic can do this for you, they’ll often charge an arm and a leg. The air filter costs around $10 and takes less than 20 minutes to install yourself. First, lift up the hood of your car and find the black rectangular box that has clips on the side. Your air filter is in this box. Open the box and remember which way the air filter faces. Remove the old filter and put the new filter in the same direction the old filter was. Close the box and secure the metal clips once you are done. This is all that needs to happen!
There’s nothing worse than getting caught in a rainstorm with bad windshield wipers. Thankfully, you can replace these yourself for just about $20. It takes less than 20 minutes, and it can make driving much more safer in a storm. Go to an auto store and pick out the wiper blades that you want. Some are as cheap as $5 a blade, but spending a few extra dollars can ensure the blades last longer. To change your blades out, grab your windshield wipers and gently lift them. Remove the old blades and pay attention to how they sit within the wipers. Find the button on the bottom of the wiper that releases the blade. Once those are popped out, insert the new blades and make sure they are secure. After this, you’re good to go!
Oil and Filter
This one is a bit more difficult than the last two, but the results are worth it. You can buy the highest quality oil at the auto shop for less than the cheapest cost you can find at a mechanics. While you’ll need to get a little dirty, your car is going to run better and you’ll save money. You’ll need a ratchet, oil filter wrench, an oil pan, and a funnel. This job should take you about 45 minutes. Remember to change your oil every 3,000 to 5,000 miles. Always remember to change your oil when the engine is cool. First, get underneath your car and find the oil pan. Unscrew the oil plug and wait as the oil drains into your oil pan. Replace the plug and get out from under the car. Find the oil filter in your engine and remove the filter with your wrench. Grab your new oil filter and lubricate the gasket with a bit of your new oil. Using only your hands, screw in the new oil filter. Use your funnel to fill up the engine with the new oil and check the level with your dip stick. After this, you just need to discard the old oil filter and you’re done!
If you ever find that your battery is corroded, that’s a bad sign. Even a little bit of the white and flaky corrosion can interfere with your battery connection, which makes driving your car harder. You want your car to run well, and this can happen by taking care of your battery. With a few wrenched and some corrosion removal fluid, you can make your battery sparkling new again. First things first, remove the battery terminals starting with the negative cable. Grab some corrosion removal fluid from the auto store. If you’re in a bind, you can actually use some Coca-Cola, but the real corrosion removal fluid should work better. However, you can also make your own by mixing up some baking soda and water. Apply whatever liquid you chose to the battery posts and scrub with a brush or a rag. Once you’re satisfied with how much has come off, rinse it with a bit of water and dry with a new rag. Replace your battery terminals and you are finished. A simple cleaning can extend the battery life of your car significantly.