As reliable as some cars can be, it is almost inevitable that you will have to do some maintenance on your vehicle at one point or another. But why crack open your wallet and take your car to a mechanic when some of these tasks can be done at home? Maintaining your car can be surprisingly fun and help you save a lot of money in the long run. It may be difficult to know exactly what maintenance tasks are achievable without calling your trusty mechanic, but we have you covered.
Below you will find out what jobs you can do without a professional to help ensure your car is running as good as it looks.
Jobs you can do Yourself
Changing your car’s fluids
From the brake fluids to the power steering fluid, changing any and all liquids in your car is a must. This fairly straightforward task is a fairly essential job as if you leave it too long expensive parts can be damaged. Although doing a full brake flush can be extremely difficult If you are not a trained professional, you can swap the car fluids (five fluids to check) fairly easily. Use a baster to remove the dark fluid found in your brakes reservoir and top it up with new fluid. Over time the old and new fluid will mix and your car will thank you for it.
Determine the cause of ‘Check Engine’ lights
We have all ran into this issue at some point or another, where the Check Engine light stays lit, and you simply cannot figure out the cause. This is where a nifty gadget known as an OBD2 scanner comes into play. This useful tool can quickly diagnose your ‘Check Engine’ light and find the root of the problem.
Most trained mechanics will have one of these tools in their roster due to just how useful they are and how much money they can save in the long run. Determining the cause of your ‘Check Engine’ lights can be a pain, but a scan tool such as an OBD2 is just one of the ways you can figure it out quickly. Personally, we would recommend the Launch X432 V+ due to its ease of use and impressive functionality. Be sure to check out a review of this product here: https://obdstation.com/launch-x431-v-plus-review/.
Replacing Your Vehicles Wiper Blades
An often-overlooked task but one that is fairly simple and pretty useful is changing your windscreen wiper blades. A lot of people forget this as it does not inherently improve your car’s performance, but it can be a quick job that is fairly necessary to do. To test whether or not your blades are working as intended, you simply need to press the washer button usually found around your car’s dashboard. If the wipers clean the windscreen well and leave minimal streaks, then the blades are working fine. If, however, they begin to streak and leave marks then you may have a problem.
Replacing your wiper blades is pretty straightforward and you should not run into too many issues. Simply find a brand that is compatible with your vehicle and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Perhaps consider paying slightly more for a well-known brand as they will last far longer.
Testing your Coolant
Fixing your coolant yourself may be a fairly tricky task, but testing to see if it is operating as intended isn’t. You will require a voltmeter of some kind, but if you are a serious car enthusiast then you will more than likely have one in your toolbox. Before you hook up your voltmeter, you want to check that has been set to the lowest DC setting. Once you are confident it is then the rest of this is a cake walk. Simply push the positive probe into your engine’s coolant and the negative probe onto the negative battery connection.
Next get into your car and rev the engine up to around 1,800 to 2000 RPM to get an accurate reading. Then simply go back to the front of your car (or wherever the engine may be) and take a note of the voltmeters reading. If it is greater than 0.4 volts, then you may have a problem. It is best to visit your local car technician if this is the case as things can get tricky from here on out.
Replacing the Engine Air Filter
This could be one of the easiest self-maintenance jobs you can do for your car and one that will boost your vehicle’s lifespan by a fair amount. Replacing an engine’s air filter is almost as simple as building a Lego house, well, almost as easy.
Most air filters will be screwed into place, but some may just be clipped onto your engine. Clipped air filters are the easiest to remove as usually you will just need to unclip it in the correct places and slide it out. If your filter is screwed in, you will need a screwdriver or similar tool to unfasten and remove your air filter. Once this has been done, hold your air filter up and pass a light through it. If the light struggles to pass through and the filter looks clammed up or dirty, then you should probably think about replacing it. Hop online or visit your local garage and find yourself a new filter that is compatible with your vehicle’s engine. Whether it is screwed in or clipped into place, repeat the same process you used to remove it and your engine is good to go. Ideally, you want to be changing your vehicle’s air filter at least once every year to help extend your car’s lifespan.
Keeping your car in a decent working condition (and preventing breakdowns) does not need to be a lot of work or cost you a fortune. A lot of tasks can be done at home and will extend your car’s lifespan vastly without you needing to dip into your wallet. Be sure to routinely look after your car and it will certainly get you from A to B for years to come!