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Car Insurance

06 Nov 2019


Car care tips: Maintenance guide for car drivers

Whether you've rented a car and heading on a roadtrip or you have your own car and regularly drive, it's important to know the basics of looking after a car. 

We've put together a checklist of things to think about before getting behind the wheel for your next drive. 
 

1. Tyre Maintenance: Checking tyre pressure

Maintaining the right tyre pressure is a really important part of looking after your car. Having the right amount of air in your tyres will impact steering, braking, accelerating, and even save you money through fuel efficiency and longer lasting tyres.

All tyres have a PSI (pounds per square inch) of air that they need to operate safely, as recommended by the tyre manufacturer. You can usually find this number on the tyre itself. Your car will most likely also have a placard showing you the right amount of PSI for your vehicle.

Some service stations have equipment that you can use to check air pressure and maintain the right amount of air in your tyres.
 

Your car tyre shows the required PSI

It's important to maintain your car's tyre pressure

Do you know where your car's tyre jack is located?

2. Engine Maintenance: Checking your engine’s oil

Oil helps keep your car engine healthy by keeping clean, cool and lubricating the moving metal parts as well as preventing friction. A healthy engine will reduce your risk of breaking down and mainitaining it will help avoid irreversible damage. You should check your car's engine oil weekly.

Before checking your engine's oil level, make sure your car is on a flat level and has been switched off long enough for it to cool down. This is so the oil has had time to settle and you get an accurate measurement.

Here's how to check the oil in your car:

  • Step 1: To start, pull out the dipstick from your engine and wipe it clean.
  • Step 2: Then push the dipstick back all the way in and wait for a few seconds. When you check the oil level, it should be between the two marks on the dipstick
  • Step 3: If your oil level is low, add more to your engine a little at a time until you have the right measurement. Be sure not to add more oil than the maximum amount marked on your car's dipstick as this will cause damage to your cars engine.

 


 

3. Knowing your car: User's Manual

When you get the keys to your car, reading the Owner’s Manual is probably not the first thing you want to do, but it’s important. It will help you understand your car better and learn about any special requirements your car has, like how often it needs to be professionally serviced. You might also discover features that you weren’t aware of, that’ll make driving your car even more enjoyable. If you’re not the first owner of your car you might also find information on your car’s service history and any maintenance history.

 


 

4. Car Exterior: Windows and Lights

Lights are an essential part of driving whether it's day or night. Lights let us indicate, see what’s ahead and let other drivers know what we’re doing, like braking and turning. So it's important to check regularly that they’re working.

Some cars have more lights than others, but here’s a list of the main ones:

  • Headlights (high and low beam)
  • Tail lights
  • Indicators (both sides)
  • Reversing lights
  • Fog lights

 


 

5. Professional Maintenance: Car Servicing

There are some parts in a car that need to be professionally maintained by a qualified mechanic or repairer. During a professional car service, there can be up to 50 or more system checks done. Regular servicing will also save your wallet in the long run, as your car will run better and more efficiently when it’s maintained well.

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Sources:
https://www.caradvice.com.au/309477/diy-tyre-pressure/
https://www.carsguide.com.au/tyre-pressure
https://www.whichcar.com.au/car-advice/what-does-oil-do
https://www.supercheapauto.com.au/blog/how-to/servicing-and-mechanical/checking-and-topping-up-engine-oil.html?fdid=how-to&csortb1=creationDate&csortd1=2#csortb1=creationDate&segment=2&csortd1=2&page=1
https://www.carsguide.com.au/car-advice/the-importance-of-servicing-your-car-23584

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