How to Maintain Your Car?

Tires, engine oil, brake pads… it is advisable to maintain your car regularly and to have it serviced every 15,000 km for a gasoline engine or every 20,000 km for a diesel engine. This post provides you tips that should help you maintain your car well.

To begin with, why should you care for the maintenance of your car?

Every car must undergo a technical inspection, either before its fourth year if it is new or every two years if it is more than four years old. The objective is to detect any malfunction that could lead to a breakdown or increase the risk of accidents. 

In addition to posing a safety risk, neglecting to maintain your vehicle may have an impact on the amount of compensation you receive from your insurance company in the event of damage.

However, don’t wait for the next technical inspection to take care of your car. From tires to engine, brakes and shocks, here’s a rundown of the different parts of your car that should be reviewed regularly for safety.

Summary of the checks to be planned

    1. Tires, 

    2. Engine, 

    3. brakes, 

    4. Shock absorbers,

    5. Other small cleaning and maintenance

1. Take care of your tires

  • Keep an eye on the inflation and condition of your tires.

The condition of your tires is one of the first things to look at closely. And for a good reason! Worn tires can be a hazard, especially in rainy conditions, increasing the risk of hydroplaning and loss of control.

  • Check for wear; take a look at the grooves (or treads).

If they are shallow or even almost smooth, it means your tires are in poor condition and have less grip on the ground. Be aware that the grooves must be at least 1.6 mm or more for safe driving. How can you tell? By observing the indicator on the tire or by using a gauge for more precision.

  • Another point to consider is inflation. 

Under-inflated tires can also reduce road grip… and, contrary to popular belief, the problem is similar in over-inflation. Thus, depending on the car model, the ideal tire pressure should be between 1.8 and 3.4 bars. The check should be done when the car is cold and ideally once a month or every 1000 km.

2. Engine maintenance

  • Quick technical reminder for novices.

The oil keeps the engine running smoothly by lubricating the parts and retaining impurities. However, as the miles go by, it evaporates and loses its quality. 

  • Change your oil at regular intervals.

Therefore, it is essential to change oil every 10,000 to 15,000 km to increase the life of your engine. Don’t forget to regularly replace the oil and filter to prevent your engine from clogging up too quickly.

  • Check your spark plugs.

Finally, check the condition of the spark plugs and don’t hesitate to change them if necessary. This will allow you to limit your fuel consumption — a little help with your car budget!

3. Review your brakes

Another must-do if you want to drive safely: the brakes. If you find that the pedal is hard, that it digs in too much, that it vibrates, or that your car jerks when you slow down, it’s usually time to have your brakes serviced or even replaced. But before you do, it’s best to have them checked every 20,000 km. Don’t forget to check the brake fluid level, which is essential for the brake pads to work correctly.

4. Shocks repair

Shock absorbers are also subject to the effects of time. That’s why they should be professionally serviced every 20,000 km or once a year—a little advice: the less aggressively you drive, the less quickly they will wear out. Finally, you should know that if your shock absorbers leak, they will be considered defective during the technical inspection. You will then have to change them and pass a second inspection.

5. Other small cleaning and maintenance routines

Don’t forget to take care of your headlight lenses, which become dull with every drive and every weather condition, to the point of significantly reducing their luminosity. It is recommended to clean them regularly with a damp sponge before rinsing them with water.

Are you planning not to use your car for a long time? Beware of battery discharge! To avoid being trapped when you want to drive again, you can connect your vehicle to a trickle charger.

Think about maintaining the bodywork: if you can wash it with soap and water, it is advisable to polish and protect it with adapted products you will usually find on the shelves at your local store. And finally: take care to dust the air vents inside the car. This way, you will breathe fresher air in your vehicle.

Hope these few tips help you maintain your car well. Don’t forget to leave your comments below.

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