At Foreign Affairs Motorwerks, we have been taking some time out to reflect on the outgoing year. Much has changed. For most of us, things are tighter financially. Perhaps this means less trips to the mall, fewer nights eating out or finally kicking the takeaway habit. Hefty mechanic bills just aren’t on the cards. So, from your favorite auto mechanic, here are five tips to get the most out of your car.
One of the cheapest ways to take good care of your engine is to change the oil regularly. We suggest that you take the standard service interval and divide it in half. Use that as your rough guideline for oil change mileage. If you stick to that or a year, you’ll find that your engine lasts much longer. Oil has a definite shelf life, so if you haven’t driven much during COVID or it’s been more than a year since your last change, get it done.
2. I’ll Take a Quart, Thanks
Make sure that you keep your auto above ¼ tank of gas. This might sound strange, so we’ll explain. Modern cars have a fuel pump that is submerged in the gas tank. This pump relies on there being some gas in the tank to keep it cool. If the level drops too far the pump gets a bit hot under the collar and can fail. When this happens, your engine will cut out. New fuel pumps are expensive. Keeping the gas topped up means that you’re always ready in case of an emergency. Finally, if the level is low, there is a much greater chance of the pump picking up dirt and clogging the fuel filter which could put strain on the pump.
3. Stay Fluid
If you’ve got an older auto with hydraulic power steering, it is a good idea to get this fluid changed. Most manufacturers regard this as ‘lifetime’ but over the years it gets dirty and causes the rack and pump to wear faster. Changing it is an inexpensive hack to keep your power steering system leak proof for longer.
This is quite an expensive service item, but if your vehicle has a belt driven cam shaft it needs periodic changes. Failure to change the belt can lead to it snapping which basically causes your engine to emulate the zombie apocalypse. Pistons smash into valves and it just becomes a giant soup of busted bits of metal.
5. Corrosion Protection
While we don’t get salt on the roads here in Florida, that doesn’t mean rust isn’t a problem. This isn’t so important if you plan on flipping your auto. If you are planning on leaving it to the grand kids, then it might be a good idea to keep it in a garage. If you have to park on the street, try to keep it under a tree. The best way to prevent rust is through regular washing and waxing. This removes road grime, and the wax adds a protective coating to the paint. Take it in once a year to get the underseal checked for holes. On older vehicles it might be worthwhile to reseal the underside as this will prevent the chassis from rusting.
Looking For a Mechanic in Pompano Beach?
‘A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.’ We have more than 30 years of experience and can honestly say that there are no perfect autos. Each marque has its own quirks, so the best car for you is most likely the one that you own. Stick to these tips your favorite mechanic has picked up along our journey and you’ll be surprised just how long your wheels last.