We rely on our vehicles for everything: commuting to work, running errands, dropping the kids off at school (or maybe hoping it will hold up to the challenges of a new teenage driver), family road trips, etc. Wouldn’t it be great if you could extend the life of your car, truck, or SUV to keep up with the regular demands of your family’s life? With a few simple tips, you can extend the life of your vehicle.
Tip 1: Be Diligent About Scheduled Maintenance
Just like going to the doctor for scheduled checkups can help ensure the health of your family, bringing your vehicle in for routine maintenance and check-ups can extend the life of your vehicle, and ensure it is running at optimal performance. The owner’s manual should have a list of what needs to be checked and when, and may include the following:
- Scheduled oil changes
- When to change air filters, brake pads, etc.
- Scheduled tire maintenance
- System flushes
Staying consistent in your vehicle maintenance routine means you’re not allowing small issues that can be fixed during a check-up to grow into big, costly problems down the road.
Tip 2: Maintain Your Tires
Tires are, literally, what connect your vehicle to the road, so making sure that they’re in great condition means a smoother ride and a lowered risk of sustaining an accident. Keeping your tires properly inflated means that they’ll grip the road properly; this helps with handling, especially in inclement weather. Staying on top of regularly scheduled alignments and rotations will also increase the life of your tires – and your vehicle as well. If your tires are misaligned or wearing unevenly, this can cause strain on other parts. Additionally, properly maintained tires can increase fuel efficiency, resulting in less trips to gas station and more money in your pocket.
Tip 3: Switch to Synthetic
While switching from conventional motor oil to full synthetic can cost twice as much, it lasts much longer than regular motor oil. Typically, with conventional oil, you will have to schedule changes every 3 months, but with full synthetic, drivers can easily go 5 to 6 months without needing to stop in for an oil change. Furthermore, synthetic oil won’t break down in extreme temperatures (like the kind we see during Texas summers).
Tip 4: Keep Your Cooling System Working Smoothly
A properly functioning cooling system can reduce a lot of strain on your engine. Flushing the system can remove build-up and rust that can damage engine parts. It will also ensure that your cooling system is keeping your engine running at peak performance, which helps you get more life out of your vehicle. Going in for cooling system flushes at the appropriate intervals could prevent a small maintenance cost from becoming an expensive engine repair.
Tip 5: Keep Your Vehicle Covered, or in a Garage
While most of this is about aesthetics, keeping your vehicle in your garage, under a carport, or covered by a loose car cover will prevent wear and tear from the elements. Small parts, like wiper blades, can be damaged and cracked by prolonged exposure to sun and heat, and it could lead to small scratches on your windshield. Protecting your vehicle from rain storms, particularly acid rain or hail storms that can damage the paint or windows of your vehicle, prolong the life of the exterior. Not to mention that keeping your vehicle safe from these elements means less money spent on fixing dings, dents, and scratches.
Bonus Tip: Drive safely!
Safe, responsible driving can also extend the life of your vehicle. Signaling lane changes and turns, using your headlights in the appropriate light and in inclement weather, and being mindful of other drivers and hazards on the road can help you avoid accidents and the accompanying costly repair prices.
Houston Vehicle Help
By following these helpful tips, you can make sure that your vehicle remains safe and dependable for your family for years to come. Interested in seeing how the friendly staff here at Dillon’s can help you extend the life of your vehicle? Give us a call, schedule an appointment online, or stop on by to see us and let us help keep your vehicle going strong.