Navigating your way through the field of auto repairs is sometimes like finding a way to get a red wine stain out of your carpet after it has situated. Try not to get off on the wrong path at the outset, but rather learn everything possible by reviewing the information that follows. You'll probably get surprised with how much you really can learn.
Pay attention to the gauges and trouble lights on your cars dash. Learn to recognize the warning signs of a car that is overheating, low on oil or not charging the battery. Knowing which of these indicators need immediate attention can prevent damage to your car and save you cash in the long run.
There are certain repairs that you can do yourself. Some of the work can be done on your own, as there are problems that are relatively easy to repair. If you're feeling lucky, look online to figure out the problem. If the job is a simple one, you might save a bit of money if you make repairs on your own.
Basic maintenance like oil changes are actually very easy to do yourself. You only need at ramp, a pan, and a few basic tools. Just be sure to check with your city or county government beforehand to find out where to take your waste oil. It is extremely damaging to the environment, and you could face steep fines for dumping it out.
Avoid costly car repairs by sticking to the maintenance schedule of your car's manufacturer. By doing regular maintenance on your car when necessary, you will avoid having to fix things due to maintenance neglect. Not sticking to the maintenance schedule will result in unnecessary repairs which could have been avoided.
Always exercise the highest level of caution when working with your car's fuel system. Never work around fuel tanks, fuel lines or pumps with sources of ignition such as cigarettes or anything that could produce a spark. Wipe up any fuel spills immediately, and protect yourself by wearing fuel-resistant gloves and eyewear.
Figure out what repairs and labor are going to cost you before handing your keys over. Some shops have these costs in conspicuous places, so you need to carefully read and ask any questions you have if something doesn't make sense. You need to know how you're billed for the repairs. Some shops will give an estimate on the repair time based on manufacturers guidelines. Simple repairs could be an all-day affair.
Stick with Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) components. If your car needs parts, choose OEM parts over generic ones. For optimum performance, you should have the OEM parts that are up to the manufacturer's standards. While generic parts are cheaper, they're generally a lower quality than the original ones. This means that you may pay more later for replacements.
Avoid rebuilt parts if possible. These parts are usually more affordable than new ones but you have no way of knowing how reliable the repairs are. Rebuilt parts have usually been into an accident or stopped working at some point and were salvaged and rebuilt. It is best to invest in newer part that have never been damaged in the past.
Pay attention to any fluids that pool under you car when parked. Small spots may not mean very much, but take note of what the fluid is. Plain water is usually just condensation that builds up on a car naturally. But bright green or orange fluid is the cooling system. Oily fluids are those like engine oil, or transmission fluid. These are warning signs.
If you are paying to have new parts installed in your car, ask the mechanic if you can see them. There is no reason why he should refuse to let you see what you have paid for. If you have any indication that the items are not new, tell the mechanic that you will be getting the work done elsewhere.
Do not worry if you find a puddle of water under your car. Puddles are usually caused by condensation from your air conditioning system. You should worry if you have not been using your air conditioning system or if you find puddles of water under your car on a regular basis.
There are quite a few body shops that are just out there to take off the tires you have and put older ones on. They do this so that they're able to make money from you being ignorant. Take a piece of chalk and mark the tires prior to dropping off your vehicle. When you pick up the vehicle, make sure that the chalk is still present, otherwise you have been scammed.
You should get your tires aligned and inflated on a regular basis. You can easily check the pressure and inflate them but you will probably need a professional to align them for you. Keep your tires in good shape will make handling your care easier and can even improve your gas mileage.
Find out how often you should perform a tune up on your vehicle. You should find this information in your owner's manual. You have probably heard that you need to tune up your vehicle every 100,000 miles but this really depends on the make an model of the vehicle you have.
Use these tips the next time you're in need of auto repair. Don't let an ignorance of the subject make the experience a miserable one. Be in charge of your car repairs, know what you options are and do your best to make a great deal.