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The internet can be a great place to gain some extra knowledge, but when it comes to researching car maintenance, you’ll probably run into a fair share of maintenance myths that will hinder more than they’ll help. Here are five myths about car maintenance that we’ve debunked.
Myth #1: You Can Ignore Some Warning Lights for a Week or Two
It’s important to always listen to what our cars are telling us, and the best way to do that is to keep an eye on the service lights on your dashboard. There’s a common misconception that, if one of these lights happens to pop up, you can wait a few days until getting the issue sorted. This is completely false – these lights are telling you that urgent attention is needed. Whether your car needs a service, your tire pressure needs to be checked, or your windshield fluid topped up, all of these issues should be seen to as soon as possible. It may be easy to let these warning lights slide for a few days, but proper maintenance keeps both you and your car safe.
Myth #2: You Should Have Your Oil Changed Every 3000 Miles
You might have heard that your car should have an oil change every 3000 miles. While this may be true for some vehicles, you should always check with your car manufacturer or owner’s manual for model-specific recommendations. Your car’s service warning light is the clearest indicator of a needed oil change and maintenance checkup to keep your car in top shape. While you may not need it as often as you think, oil changes are vital for good car maintenance.
Myth #3: You Can Wash Your Car With Any Kind of Soap
If you search around online, you may see that using dish soap, laundry detergent or hand soap to clean your car is a useful ‘hack’ that can save you money. This is going to end up doing much more damage in the long run, and it’s going to cost you a lot more money to fix. Dish soap is specially formulated to break down waxy foods, and this means that you run a high risk of stripping the wax from your car and damaging the paint underneath. Take the time to find a soap that will suit your car’s needs, and make sure to read the label, as a lot of products may not be one-soap-fits-all.
Myth #4: The Fuel Grade You Choose Doesn’t Matter
This is another common misconception: the type of gas you use for your car doesn’t make a difference, and regular, cheaper fuel is good for anyone. While regular gas is good for most cars, it’s recommended that high performance and luxury cars use premium grade fuel. High octane gas in high performance cars will help keep your engine running at optimal levels, and could also help improve your fuel economy. If you’re unsure what fuel you should be using, you should check your owner’s manual for any specific requirements.
Myth #5: Maintenance Done Outside of a Dealership Affects Your Warranty
A lot of uninformed buyers may feel pressured to return to the dealership for their scheduled service, but you can actually have your car serviced by any quality technician without voiding your warranty. The easiest way to do damage to your warranty is to do no maintenance at all. You no longer need to take your car to dealerships for potential service recalls, either, as we’ll check for any upgrades or issues when you book in for a service.
If you’re unsure about how to keep your car running at its best, don’t hesitate to check in with us for a service that’s personalized to your car and your needs. Contact us at Foreign Affairs Motorsport for any maintenance assistance, and leave the dish soap to the dishes!