Avoiding Maintenance Mistakes

Preventive measures ensure that your car is functioning properly, and that your money stays in your wallet. Simple fixes can become large expenses (sometimes life threatening) when left unchecked for too long. Here are some maintenance TO-DOs that will save you some big bucks in the long run.

1. You must schedule service maintenance
When you put this off for too long, you may be faced with a host of issues that range from old antifreeze that may be rotting in your coolant reservoir to a fault in your break lines. Issues like these are a quick and relatively cheap fix when addressed in a timely fashion. Not only is it important for the sake of keeping your car in good shape, but also to ensure your safety.

2. Do not ignore your check-engine light
Diagnosing the problem is crucial because the check engine light goes off for a number of issues. Some issues are more severe than others and sometimes we cannot readily tell which of these we are facing without getting our car serviced. The check-engine light can be an indication of a loose gas cap, or something as urgent as mass air flow sensor failure, to name a few.

3. Change the oil in your engine regularly
The oil in your engine not only acts as a lubricant to movable metal parts by allowing them to run smoothly, but it also serves as a protective layer between these parts to prevent friction and thus overheating. Over time the oil breaks down and turns into a sludge, causing friction and future engine failure.

4. Refill necessary fluids
Maintaining fluids such as coolant, brake and transmission fluids should not be neglected because they affect your cars performance. Coolant for example, contains certain additives that prevent corrosion, freezing and boiling. Over time these additives become depleted and cause the buildup of contaminants and debris. Brake fluid serves as a lubricant for moving parts of your car and it transfers the force you put on the break to the wheel hub, allowing you to stop. Unfortunately, brake fluid absorbs moisture over time which causes it to have a lower temperature at which it boils, thus vaporizing your brake fluid and not generating enough pressure when you press the brake. When this issue is not addressed, your brakes will fail.

5. Stop driving when your car overheats
Failing to stop driving when your car overheats will cause elevating temperatures within your engine. Elevating temperatures will eventually cause it to break down, for surrounding plastic and rubber parts to melt and for metal parts to warp.

6. Change oil and air filters
Air filters prevent dirt and unwanted crud from entering the car’s engine. They also enable the air to flow into the car, allowing the combustion reaction to make power for the car. An air filter that is extremely dirty will not allow the engine to take in the necessary air it needs to power the car. An oil filter sifts through engine oil which can contain metal shavings and other impurities that can damage the engine and surrounding parts over time if left unchanged.

7. Check tire pressure
Tires that are under-inflated perform less efficiently in general, but they can also be less responsive in dangerous situations, not to mention they cause you to burn more fuel.

8. Do not attempt to service your vehicle for more sophisticated fixes
High tech fixes can be very frustrating to deal with, even with the help of manuals. Certified car dealerships have the know-how for varying degrees of complexity. Contact Mighty Discount Automotive, we possess the knowledge and expertise to handle all your high tech fixes. Or schedule and appointment online!

9. Make an informed decision when choosing original equipment manufacturer parts (OEM’s) vs. aftermarket parts
Aftermarket parts are car parts that do not come from the car’s maker. These parts can be less expensive, have better availability and can sometimes be of better quality than their original counterparts. On the other hand, they may not be under a warranty, their quality cannot be ensured and if you’re not very familiar with the plethora of different brands, you may pick something of poor quality. Though OEM’s are more expensive, need to be bought at a dealership (requires some waiting) and may not be of superior quality, they are made by the car’s manufacturer, parts are easier to choose, quality can be assured and they come with a warranty.

10. Have your car serviced in a qualified shop
When choosing a qualified auto repair shop, it is essential to make an informed decision. You can do this by seeing whether potential shops are capable of working with the make and model of your car, that the technicians have trade school diplomas and certifications and that the potential shops have a good reputation.

When it comes to ensuring quality maintenance & auto repairs, you can count on our experts at Mighty Discount Automotive in Centereach, 11720.