8 basic car maintenance tips

There are several little things you can do to help toward basic car maintenance. Looking after these small areas of your car can help you avoid big bills down the line, and will make your journeys much more pleasant. 

8 basic car maintenance tips 

Check out our list of 8 basic car maintenance tips to help keep different parts of your car in top working order. 

1.    Give it the once over 

Inspecting your car and giving it the once over yourself can help you spot if something looks amiss or isn’t working as it should. Check for signs of wear, little bits of rust, small dents or scratches on the car’s body. 

2.    Check your air filter 

This is a really easy bit of basic car maintenance you can do yourself. Each year, or every 12,000 miles, you’ll want to give your air filter a clean to help keep the engine working perfectly. Once you’ve located the filter under the bonnet and popped it out, just give it a wipe down of any gunk and replace it. If you can’t find your filter, give your user manual a quick glance. 

man checking the oil level in his car

3.    Test your water and engine oil levels

These are very basic bits of car maintenance that you really should be checking regularly. Making sure your oil levels are correct means your engine will be able to run smoothly. Water levels are important for your visibility and for keeping the car at the right temperature. We recommend you check water and oil levels before setting out on any long journey. 

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4.    Take a look at your tyres 

You tyres should be inflated to the recommended amount and they should meet the minimum legal tread. You can test your tread with a 20p! If the outer rim is obscured when you place it in the tread, you’re good to go. Take a look at our tips for checking your tyres.

5.    Check all your lights 

Indicators, head lights, break lights. Give them all a test to make sure they’re all working. You’ll need someone to help you with this, so why not check both your cars at the same time? 

6.    Windscreen wipers 

You don’t want to get caught in a downpour with wipers that don’t work. Simply lift your wipers away from the screen and inspect them. Make sure they’re not cut or torn, and there’s no debris stuck to them. 

windscreen wipers getting basic car maintenance

7.    Set your air-conditioning to work 

This is a really easy one to test. All you have to do it turn your air con on to make sure it’s working properly. If you don’t regularly use it, the system might dry out, which can lead to an expensive bill when winter comes around. 

8.    Listen to the car 

Get familiar with how the car sounds when it’s running normally. This will give you a first warning that something could be wrong later down the line. You’ll also be able to tell something is wrong if you have to top up your fluids – including fuel – more often than you’re used to. 

These 8 basic car maintenance tips can help you keep your car, or hire vehicle, in excellent working order. They’re simple things you can regularly check to help prevent large, unexpected bills from your garage later down the line. 

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