Yes, we all hate doing car maintenance, but when it comes to car ownership, it is one of the rights of passage for owners these days. So naturally, we thought it would be nice to avoid having to pay for a tow when your car breaks down by completing some preventive maintenance yourself! Plus, this will help you save a couple of bucks moving forward and not paying dealership pricing for something that could only take you 30 minutes to learn and complete.
Air Filter Change
Although we said that these jobs would only take you 30 minutes, this one will only take 10! Air filters generally are changed every 12 months or 12,000 miles and help ensure that your car is intaking clean air during operation. Here are the steps:
- Find your air filter, usually a black rectangular box with metal clips. If you are still lost, consult your owners manual to find the location.
- Open the clips and make sure to check how the air filter sits inside the box.
- Remove the old filter
- Replace the filter and close the clips.
- Windshield Wipers
Windshield wipers are a simple change that even the most novice of car owners can successfully change. You will want to change your windshield wipers every six months or so, but if you notice that your wipers are starting to get streaky, it might be useful to get a new pair. Each car is a little different on how to install the wipers, so make sure to consult your manual on the exact size and method of installation. However, here are the typical steps:
- Lift the old blades.
- Make sure to pay attention to how the old blades were secured; this will come in handy in the next couple of steps.
- Lift the tab, or slide the old blades off of the window wiper arm.
- Attach the new blades while making sure that you complete the installation by securing the new blades to the wiper arm.
- Battery Maintenance
Maintaining a battery can mean the difference in a car’s longevity, especially if you are dealing with a northern climate with a mean winter. Batteries, like the rest of the vehicle, need to be cared for, and many owners forget to even locate the battery, let alone take care of it. Here is how to maintain your battery to help avoid issues of a dead battery!
- Remove the battery terminals, and make sure to start with the negative cable first, or you might be in for a shock.
- Clean the posts with a professional cleaner; if you are stuck, coca-cola will do the trick as well. Rub the cleaner on the posts generously and then clean with a wire brush.
- Rinse the cleaning fluid off of the posts with warm water.
- Dry the posts with a rag
- Replace battery terminals.
Keeping your car up and running can be easy, but it will take some work, and some time to learn how to do it yourself!