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Six Ways to Avoid Costly Vehicle Repairs

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It’s never a good thing when your vehicle’s dashboard warning lights come on.  You may be tempted to ignore it, but it simply isn’t a good idea.  The same goes for routine maintenance.  Skipping an oil change may save a few bucks short-term, but can do long-term and expensive damage to your vehicle.

Here are six things the experts at Antwerpen Chrysler Jeep recommend you do to keep your vehicle in optimum condition:

Recommended Service Schedule

Even the best built vehicle needs routine maintenance to stay in top-top shape.  Following the manufacturer’s guidelines for recommended service can help prevent small items from turning into costly repairs.

Monitor Filters and Fluids

Oil lubricates pistons and keeps metal-on-metal friction from generating excess heat which can cause your engine to seize up. Dirty oil thickens and can clog up your filter and can more engine wear.  Stay on top of oil changes.  You’ll also want to check your transmission, power steering, radiator coolant, and brake fluids regularly.  Most leaks can be easily fixed if caught in time.  If there’s a leak under your vehicle, get it checked.

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Don’t Ignore Your Tires

In addition to checking for wear-and-tear, make sure your tires are properly inflated.  Underinflated tires can negatively impact your gas mileage and cause steering issues. Overinflating makes your tires more vulnerable to rocks and other road hazards. Both can lead to faster wear.

You’ll also want to check your alignment occasionally.  Poor alignment and improper tire inflation can be safety issues as well as decreasing your fuel efficiency while making your ride rougher.

Check that Check Engine Light

When the check engine light comes on, something’s wrong.  It might be a simple fix, but it’s not worth taking the risk.  Having to drop in a new engine is an expensive fix that might be prevented by getting that check engine light checked out right away.

Before you head to the mechanic, check to make sure the seal on your gas cap is tight.  The cap helps maintain pressure in the fuel tank and a loose cap can trigger your check engine light. 

Listen for Brake Noise

There’s a small metal shim that lets you know audibly when you need to replace your brake pads.  When you hear that squealing sound, it’s time to get it fixed.  You’ll hear a grinding sound when you’ve worn your brakes pad down too far.  That can scratch up rotors and add to your repair bill.  The longer you wait to replace brake pads, the more damage you’ll do.

Keep it Clean

A clean car is a happy car!  A dirty car can mean dirt and chemical buildup that can damage your finish and lead to rust.  When it comes to trading in the old car for a new one, a well-maintained and clean vehicle is likely to get a better price point.

Follow these guidelines from Antwerpen Chrysler Jeep to keep you safe and extend your vehicle’s life.

Source

http://auto.howstuffworks.com/car-driving-safety/safety-regulatory-devices/never-changed-oil.htm

http://blog.firestonecompleteautocare.com/alignment/is-it-time-for-a-wheel-alignment/

https://www.edmunds.com/car-care/what-your-check-engine-light-is-telling-you.html

http://www.jdpower.com/cars/articles/tips-advice/warning-signs-you-need-new-brakes