Car maintenance: Quick ways to keep your car in tip top condition

 

Your car takes a battering from the weather. In the UK it is subjected to road salt, mud, grit and thousands of bugs. Here are a few ways you can ensure that your car stays in great condition all year round. Perfect fr car maintenance.

 

Oil level and condition

 

Getting an oil change is one of the best things you can do for your car. As oil gets older it isn’t able to protect the engine components efficiently. This can lead to problems and eventually engine failure if it isn’t checked.

 

To check your oil pull out the dipstick under the bonnet. If the oil is very black then this usually means it will need changing. If the oil is light brown and easy to see through on the dipstick then it probably still has some life left in it. Find out more about driving at Toptests. Best way for car maintenance.

 

Keep an eye on the radiator

 

How car radiators work

An engine is usually connected to a radiator at the front of the car with a fan in front of it. The fan cools the water in the radiator which is pumped around the engine, keeping the oil and other parts at the correct temperature.

 

Most engines rely on water being pumped around them, although there are some which are air cooled and don’t have a radiator. The oil inside the engine gets very hot and if it overheats it becomes very thin and can’t protect the engine. If you notice any loud knocking sounds stop the engine and pull over immediately. Normally there will be a warning light on the dashboard that shows you that your engine is overheating.

 

Overheating is normally caused by the radiator losing water which means it can’t pump cool water around the engine. Because of this the engine just gets hotter and hotter until it gets damaged. Sometimes the fan stops working which means the water can’t be cooled down quickly enough.

 

Always check the water level in your radiator and refill it when necessary. Perfect for car maintenance.

 

Let the engine warm up

 

When you first start the car each day don’t drive it hard straight away. Give the engine and oil time to warm up. At first it can take a little bit of time for the oil to be pumped around each part and if the engine is raced during this time damage can be caused. Generally it’s best to drive carefully for the first ten minutes until the car has reached ‘operating temperature’.

 

Brake fluid

 

If your brakes feel spongy and aren’t as good as they once were, chances are your brake fluid needs to be replaced.

 

Car brakes are hydraulic and have hydraulic fluid in them which allows them to stop the car very quickly. If the fluid gets air or water in it then it becomes much less effective. Unfortunately hydraulic oil is prone to absorbing water so it needs changing at regular intervals. Always keep an eye on your brakes as they are one of the most important parts of the car.

 

*This is a collaboration post

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