Tips, Tricks & Trends

How To Maintain Your Vehicle If Your Auto Shop Is Closed?

During the time of the COVID-19 Pandemic, some essential businesses are closed. Among those are auto shops. If your usual repair shop is closed, here are some below ways to manage your maintenance until we are back to our new normal.

Check Your Engine Oil

Do it regularly, monthly for a vehicle in good condition; more often if you notice an oil leak or find you need to add oil routinely. The car should be parked on level ground so you can get an accurate dipstick reading. Don’t overfill. And if you do have a leak, find and fix it soon.

Check Your Tire Air Pressure

Do this when the tires are cold (before the vehicle has been driven or after no more than a couple of miles of driving). Use the inflation pressure recommended by the vehicle’s manufacturer, not the maximum pressure embossed on the tire’s sidewall. The recommended pressure is usually found on a placard on a front doorjamb, in the glove compartment, or in the owner’s manual. Also be sure to inspect tires for abnormal or uneven wear, cuts, and any sidewall bulges you can see.W

Wash Your Car

Try to wash the car every week by hand, if you can. Wash the body and, if necessary, hose out the fender wells and undercarriage to remove dirt and road salt. It’s time to wax the finish when water beads become larger than a quarter.

Check the Air Filter

Remove the air-filter element and hold it up to a strong light. If you don’t see light, replace it. Regardless, follow the recommended service intervals.

Inspect the Exhaust System

If you’re willing to make under-car inspections, check for rusted-through exhaust parts that need replacing. Also, tighten loose clamps. Do this while the car is up on ramps. Listen for changes in the exhaust sound while driving. It’s usually advisable to replace the entire exhaust system all at once rather than to repair sections at different times.

Look at the Brakes

For most people, it makes sense to have a shop check and service the brakes. In the meantime, handle your own brake work, remove all wheels and examine the brake system. Replace excessively worn pads or linings and have badly scored rotors or drums machined or replaced. The brakes should be checked at least twice per year; more often if you drive a lot of miles.

Check the Fluids

On many newer cars, the automatic transmission is sealed. On cars where it is not sealed, check the transmission dipstick with the engine warmed up and running (please see the owner’s manual for details). Also check the power-steering-pump dipstick (it’s usually attached to the fluid-reservoir cap) and the level in the brake-fluid reservoir. If the brake-fluid level is low, top it up and have the system checked for leaks.

Clean the Radiator

Prevent overheating by removing debris with a soft brush and washing the outside of the radiator with a detergent solution.

We hope these tips will assist you throughout your quarantine stay. Remember, try not to go overboard, your auto shop will be open soon enough!