Engine maintenance

How often do you get your car inspected? Routine maintenance is one of the many responsibilities of the average car owner and can be done in a variety of ways, from checking your lights before heading off to work to taking your vehicle to an auto repair shop twice per year. Even better is when you cover all your bases, as even a minor issue with your spark plugs or coolant can cost you hundreds of dollars every year and put you at risk when you’re driving on the open road. Below is a comprehensive list of the basic repairs you should do throughout the year, from smog inspection to rotating your tires. Let’s take a look.

Cars In America

It’s no secret America is the car capital of the world. The United States will have 260 million cars on the road by 2018, up 5% from previous years and marking a record high. The average car on the road today is at a record 11 years old, which is nothing to say of some of the classic models people invest in. While sports cars and motorcycles are popular, the most beloved types remain trucks and jeeps for their flexibility and durability. The gas mileage of your car (and what you should do to maintain it) depends heavily on your model and the age of your car.

Gas Mileage

Did you know you can improve your gas mileage by as much as 4% with a proper tune-up? Keeping your car in good shape not only keeps you safe on the open road, it’s necessary to prevent you from wasting your money unnecessarily. Gas mileage may improve by as much as 40% following a significant repair, such as fixing a faulty oxygen sensor in your system. Of course, gas mileage is only half the battle — keeping your tires in tip-top shape will help immensely with keeping your figures respectable.

Tires

A car won’t go far without a good set of tires. Professionals recommend tires be inflated to appropriate pressure levels as well as rotated every 6,000 miles to promote uniform tire wear. Tire rotation is an essential function of safe driving and proper wear and tear both — uneven tires can ruin your treads and make it difficult to round corners and brake properly. If they’re worn out, damaged or punctured it’s imperative you get them replaced as soon as possible to avoid a possible accident while driving.

Repair

A little goes a long way when keeping your car healthy. Your brake pads should be replaced every 20,000 miles to work properly, but it never hurts to double-check your owner’s manual for specifics about your model. Some may need to be replaced sooner and others at a later-than-average date. Spark plugs generally need replacing after 30,000 miles, but as stated above, being familiar with your car’s unique properties will keep you from wasting money unnecessarily. Your cooling system should be flushed once per year, as well as your coolant, and wiper blades can last at least six months and still function. Engine maintenance also includes a smog inspection, the after-effects of your car on your surrounding environment.

Smog Inspection

Last, but not least, we have smog inspection. Checking the emissions of your vehicle can say a lot about the state of your engine and what actions should be taken to keep it functioning smoothly. Considering the country is continuing to become more privy to the damage excess vehicle emissions can cause to the environment and people’s general health, it’s a social responsibility to contact your local retailer and give your vehicle a smog inspection check. Now that you’re caught up on all the different ways you can improve your car — when will you getting your car serviced?