Buying a vehicle is a significant expense, so you want your new car, truck or SUV to last for many years. Taking proper care of your vehicle is the best way to extend its lifetime. Many people think it is enough to keep up with regular maintenance appointments but being a responsible car owner involves much more. If you want to get the most for your money and make sure your new vehicle runs smoothly for many years, start these five habits.
Do Your Research
Before you decide on a vehicle to buy, you need to do some research to make sure the model you are considering meets your needs. You also need to consider where you live and how much you plan to drive. If you live in a region where the terrain is rugged, you need a hardier vehicle that won’t tear up. You may need a smoother ride if you spend a lot of time traveling on the highway. Do a significant amount of research before test driving vehicles so you know which one will best meet your needs.
Get Problems Fixed Quickly
As long as your vehicle is running, you may be tempted to ignore minor problems to save money. This is almost always a bad idea because minor problems can become major quickly and cause irreparable damage to your vehicle. It’s important to have repairs done quickly whenever you notice something is wrong with your vehicle. You can either take your car to a local dealership to get replacement parts made by the original equipment manufacturer or you can get the parts you need from an aftermarket dealer. If you choose the latter option, you need to work with a reputable company backed by people who are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the automotive industry such as Patrick James Trico.
Protect the Vehicle From the Elements
The elements can wreak havoc on a vehicle. While damage from natural elements is usually cosmetic, it can occasionally cause problems with how the vehicle runs. It is especially important to make sure you have somewhere to park your new car if you live in a region with frequent severe thunderstorms. A garage is the best way to shield your car from the elements, so if you have an enclosed garage, make it a habit to park your new car in it every night to keep it safe from rain, hail and flying debris.
If you don’t have an enclosed garage, you may want to consider erected a metal roof to keep hail from damaging your car. If that isn’t an option for you, you can protect your vehicle with a car cover. While a car cover may not be the most effective protection from hail damage, it will shield your vehicle from rain, dust and pollen so the exterior of the vehicle stays looking brand new.
Wash and Wax Regularly
Cleaning your car regularly is the best way to keep the exterior shiny. You can go through a car wash every few weeks, but it is best to clean your vehicle yourself so you can examine it for any problems. Schedule time to wash and wax your car every few months so you are aware of any issues with the exterior of the vehicle. This also gives you a chance to examine the tires so you know when to replace them. Save the car wash for months when your schedule is tight and you don’t have the time to do it yourself. If you wax the vehicle every time you wash it, the car will stay cleaner for longer.
Keep Up With Routine Maintenance
You may not think about taking your car to the shop if there isn’t anything wrong with it, but routine maintenance is an important aspect of vehicle care. At these maintenance visits, technicians can examine your vehicle for any potential problems and perform routine tasks such as oil changes and tire rotations. You should schedule a maintenance appointment approximately every 3,000 miles for the best results. However, you also need to remember that how you drive affects the maintenance of your vehicle. Fill your car up with high-quality fuel and try to avoid driving over treacherous terrain that could tear up the undercarriage of your vehicle. You should also avoid bad driving habits such as slamming on the brakes.
With the right care and maintenance, your new car can carry you many miles for a long time. It isn’t enough to just buy a vehicle with great reviews. While this certainly plays a role in the longevity of the vehicle, proper care is an even more important factor. Use these five tips when caring for your vehicle so you can make sure it lasts for many years so you can get the most for the money you spent on a new car, SUV or truck.