The day you buy your new car, you tell yourself that you’ll do whatever it takes to make this car last longer than your previous ride but what does that entail?
Most of us go into the car-buying process with the idea that we’ll drive the vehicle we purchase for many years. The reality is most of us will only own that car for a short time and trade it a few years down the road. Whether you keep your car until it no longer works or you drive it for a few years and trade it, these tips can help you experience longevity with your ride.
1. A Clean Car Stays the Course Better than a Dirty One
When you regularly wash your car inside and out, you’ll not only get a sense of pride in your vehicle, but you’ll also enjoy a car that drivers for much longer than most. You’ve got to get the road dirt and debris off of your car to ensure things continue to operate properly. This is especially true if you live in an area where salt is used to remove ice from the road.
2. Don’t Ignore the Warning Signs
If you start to hear, feel, or smell something that doesn’t seem right to you, head to the repair shop and let them see what’s going on with your car. The warning signs can help you prevent a major problem later on and help your car last longer. If you do the opposite and turn up the radio, hoping the problem will go away, it will be much worse and more costly down the road.
3. Change the Oil Regularly, but Not As Often as in Older Cars
Unless you drive an older model car, you don’t need to change your oil every 3,000 miles, but you do need to have the oil changed regularly. This maintenance item is on the list for your regular service needs, and it could be listed for every 5,000 miles. We have much better oil in the market than before, which means you can drive longer than ever. If you want to make your ride perform better and longer, use full synthetic oil in your engine.
4. Stick to the Service Schedule; It’s a Schedule for a Reason
Don’t assume you know more than the manufacturer; you don’t. When you buy a new car, it comes with a service schedule. If you want to make your car last longer, you need to stick to this schedule and have your car cared for the right way whenever it’s time to bring your vehicle to the shop for these service appointments. Taking care of your car consistently offers the longevity you’re looking for.
5. Dial Back the Aggression on the Road
You have a direct impact on your car and its longevity. If you accelerate and brake hard at every light and every turn, you’ll wear out some of the parts of your vehicle that should last much longer. Calm down when out on the road. You don’t need to take off quickly or brake hard. Changing your habits will help to give you longer-lasting consumable parts of your car and protect items that shouldn’t wear out during the time you own your vehicle.
6. Warm Your Vehicle Up Properly
Starting your engine from cold and taking off on the road is really bad for your car. It’s also bad to let your engine idle for a long time as a warm-up procedure. If you want your car to last longer, you need to let it idle for about one minute before driving. During the first few miles, drive gently to allow the engine oil to circulate and get up to its normal working temperature. This protects your car and allows you to enjoy driving it for many more years than expected.
7. Check Your Tires Regularly
The tires of your car are the only item that actually touches the road. If your tires are overinflated, underinflated, have low tread, or are unbalanced, they can have a negative impact on your vehicle and how you drive. At least once a month, check your tire air pressure at the gas station and add air as needed. This not only helps make your car drive better, it adds more fuel mileage to your ride and gives you the longevity you desire in your car.
8. Do You Have a Turbocharger? If so, Protect it
How can you protect your turbocharger and make sure it lasts as long as possible? When you know that you’re only a couple of miles from where you’ll end your drive, start driving much more conservatively. This allows everything to circulate and cool down. Your turbocharger needs to cool down to protect the bearings inside this feature. This is one great way to help make your car last longer and protects your turbo from damage.
9. Your Air Filter is Extremely Important; Check it at Every Oil Change
You won’t need to change your air filters as often as the oil in your engine, but you do need to check it and change it regularly. Your air filter should be changed every 15,000-20,000 miles to ensure you’ve always got clean air flowing into your engine. You need clean air going into the engine to ensure the engine performs at its best and everything runs well. A clean air filter helps improve the fuel mileage of your vehicle.
10. Use the Parking Brake When Parking on Any Incline
Parking on flat surfaces is fine and won’t stress out the parking pawl of your transmission, but when you park on an incline, it’s important to use the parking brake. If your driveway has an angle or you live in a hilly city, this should become part of your regular habits when you want to make your car last longer. If you don’t, the parking pawl might break and will require the transmission to be replaced, which is extremely expensive.
Use these ten tips to make your car last longer and give you the best performance and longevity desired when you drive your next ride. These habits start the day you drive your new ride off the lot.
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