As the technology develops, there are fewer and fewer things we can do with our cars. Everything is getting computerized and there is almost nothing that a simple visual inspection can discover. And the manufacturers are turning towards this as well. Open the hood and you’ll see a plastic engine cover. That’s it. Still, there are some things that we can still do to discover issues, make our cars safer, make them perform better and make their parts last a bit longer
No Immediate Rush with a Diesel
Diesels have got a lot better in the past decade and a half. Common rail technology increased power ratings immensely but it still kept general advantages of the diesels such as decreased fuel consumption, and improved torque at lower rpms. They are now more fuel efficient than the petrol cars, they pull easier and some of them can even compete on the track. But one thing still remains. When you are starting your diesel engine when it’s cold, you should wait for a few seconds for the heaters to prepare everything. This is usually indicated on your dash by a light that turns on when you turn the ignition key to the first position and turns off a few seconds later. When it’s off, you can safely start the engine.
There are plenty of options for your car tyres – most of them you can find here. First of all the pressure. The required tyre pressure is indicated on every car. It might be on your door sill, or on the inside of the fuel filler cover and even If you can’t find it, getting the information online is pretty easy. A rule of thumb says that the required pressure should be somewhere around 2 bar or 30 psi for most regular cars. You should be safe with this much air inside, but make sure you check what the manufacturer says.
Moreover, make sure you change your tyres at the change of the seasons. Due to their composition, winter tyres are not performing well in hot weather and vice versa. Also, they wear quicker.
After you have travelled some distances on a set of tyres make sure you see if they wear evenly. If not, you either need to adjust the pressure, your suspension needs to be checked, or your car has had an accident where the geometry of the car has been altered.
Check all of them regularly. Engine oil is the most important. The engine oil dip stick is located somewhere near the engine and usually clearly marked. The car needs to have a cold engine and it should be on a level surface. On the stick itself, near the bottom, there are two markings. The oil level should be somewhere near the top marking, but anything between the two is ok. Have in mind that you shouldn’t have more oil than needed. This is also bad. So keep you oil level close to the top marking, but not over it.
Oil for brakes and transmission is not at reach with every car, but on the one where it is, there is usually a vessel with markings that show you the desired levels. Note that all three oils (engine, brakes and transmission) are different, so you should only use the right one for each of these respectively.
Water or coolant level is also paramount. The cap is usually at the radiator itself, or in a separate vessel, but always clearly indicated. If you lack water, you car’s heating might not work properly and your engine could heat up and break down, which is an expensive malfunction. Make sure you check the coolant level when your car’s engine is cold, because if it’s hot, the coolant can burst out once you remove the cap and cause severe burns.
Apart from looking better, your car’s paintwork will remain in great condition for longer. Even bird droppings can damage the paint and cause bad looks and premature rust.
So, there you go. These check-ups can be performed by anyone and at any time, so make sure you do them regularly.