There is nothing quite like the freedom of owning your own car. You are able to go out and do the things you want to do, without answering to anyone else. But it can also leave you stranded on the roadside when a mechanical malfunction occurs. Use these tips to get it to run again.
Buy a good battery charger to keep in the car. This will be very useful in case your battery dies or if you run into someone who needs help with their battery. Know where the cables should be connected and how. It is sometimes different for different cars.
Ask any questions you have. Make sure that you are specific with your questions when you pose them. One of the best ways to save on car maintenance is to prevent problems in the first place. A little money spent for prevention can save thousands in the future.
Ensure your car has an emergency kit. A battery charger, tire changing tools and an extra can of gas are just a few of the items to have on hand. It is also wise to include a flashlight, some fresh batteries and a blanket in case your vehicle breaks down in cold weather or at night.
Before allowing an auto shop to do repairs to your vehicle, ensure you are aware of the total cost. If you don’t understand something, make sure to clarify it first. You don’t want to get the car back, only to be shocked at how much the repairs cost you.
Keep an eye on your radiator levels. Run your engine for several minutes, and then turn it off and pop your hood. Don’t open your radiator if your car is running. Use a dipstick to check the amount of fluid in the radiator. You should also make sure to mix coolant fluid with water before you pour it into your radiator.
Be aware of a mechanic who makes unneeded repairs to your car. A trustworthy mechanic should inform you about parts that are becoming worn and will need replacement in the near future, but no parts should be replaced without first getting your approval. If you notice a mechanic has made unnecessary repairs to your vehicle, do not go to the same one next time.
Remember that getting OEM parts is important. These parts are directly from the manufacturer of your vehicle. While generic parts may be cheaper, you’ll never know how good the quality is. It may cost you more in the end to use generic parts even though you save money now.
Ask the tech if they’ve done work on your model and make of car before. If the answer is yes, that’s a very good thing.
Look out for obvious “red flags” when dealing with a new auto repair company. If they do not answer you directly, you may want to find someone else. Run, don’t walk, to another mechanic.
Find out how much a mechanic charges for the repair, including labor, before you hand over your keys. Sometimes it’s easy to spot the rates on the wall, but read them carefully. You should understand how you are billed by your mechanic. Some shops have the repair times established by certain manufacturers. Some minor repairs might be considered as an all day job by some manufacturers.
Make sure to study your owners manual. Any auto professional with a good reputation will need to know all he can about your car. The manual may give you information to help you easily fix a problem.
Ensure that your oil is changed with regularity. It is essential to have your oil changed so that your engine runs properly and and works at its peak performance. If your oil is not changed on a regular basis, your car may not last as long as it could.
Getting your vehicle fixed does not necessarily mean you will have to spend a fortune on repairs. DIY fixes are often simple and cheap. By using the tips from this article, you should know when to leave the repairs to the professionals and when to tackle them on your own.
Make sure to have all your car records on hand. It’s wise to keep them in your glove compartment in case you need to go to a auto repair shop on the fly. The auto shop will definitely want to see any records. This can make the process go more smoothly.