Effective Ways to Keep Your Car in Top Condition

carJust like we take care of ourselves, stay in shape and eat the right things, same applies to cars. We all want our cars to be in top conditions such as those of Platinum Access Limousines, and achieving such state doesn’t come easy. It is always painful to have to part with our savings to pay for car repairs and other related charges. To ensure that your car is always in top conditions, you need to ensure that maximum care takes place. It is very important to follow all set recommendations and precautions to ensure that your car is in pristine condition, and here is how to go about it.

Check Owner’s Manual

One of the most important things in your car is owner’s manual. It is a booklet that spells anything in terms of guide, on what you would want in your car. It explains things such as – the kind of fuel your car needs, any additions and modifications you can make to your car, among other things. It spells out things you can do to your car without voiding the warranty.

Engine

Oil is an essential element of your car engine. You need to change the car oil after every three months, or at least 3,000 miles. This helps in keeping your car in pristine condition. If you have a tow trailer, or you drive in dusty conditions, you should frequently change oil. You should also avoid short trips whereby you don’t give your engine appropriate time to warm up. Change engine oil, change oil filter, fuel filter and air filter and check spark plugs as well.

Transmission

The car transmission is very important in ensuring the car moves in the right manner. Transmission brings power from the engine to the wheels. A regular checkup of car transmission fluids will help in keeping your car moving smoothly and as required. The car battery should also be well looked into. Batteries store energy that your car requires to start the engine.

Emission System

The emission system runs for almost the entire length of your car. It is responsible for moving analyzing gases and refining them into water vapor and a less harmful gas, and directs them through dampers to ensure a reduction on effects of noise. While hanging at the bottom of your vehicle, the emission system does very important task. To keep your car running smoothly, you need to ensure that the emission system is in good working condition.

 

4 Ways to Care for Your Car’s Electrical System

car electricalAs a driver, do you ever bother to know how your car electrical system works? Most likely, the answer is ‘No.’ Most car drivers only give it a thought after their car breaks down in the middle of nowhere and they have to call for expert towing services from http://www.charlotteareatowingservice.com. Taking good care of your car means commitment, investing your time, money and understanding how the various components function to keep it going. Your car’s electrical system undergoes wear and tear making it paramount to keep regular appointments with a technician who will ensure the car remains classy at all times. But even before involving the experts, you have to be familiar with how to properly care for the electrical system to avoid spending hefty professional charges all the time.

Inspect the battery regularly and clean the battery cables

The white or bluish substance on the battery cables is mostly acid build-up that can cause corrosion. Check the battery once a month to make sure there is no build up. In the case where it is there, use a wire brush and mixture of water and baking soda to clean the area- be sure to remove the cables from the battery posts first. Corroded wires prevent the battery from supplying power to the other components of the electrical system thus reducing the efficiency of your car.

Replace the car battery when need be

car batteryUsually, a well-maintained car battery can serve you for 4-5 years. However, if the battery starts leaking, fails to charge or develops other problems, the best thing is to replace it. In a case where the battery has already served you for five years, don’t wait for it to stop charging, just replace it. Otherwise, it will fail you when you have an urgent matter to attend to.

Regularly inspect the alternator belt

Without the alternator, your car battery can never charge. The alternator is, therefore, the life force of your car’s electrical system. A cracked, dry, glazed or loose belt prevents the alternator from working efficiently. If you are unsure or uncomfortable checking the belt yourself, involve a technician who will inspect and also advise you if it is time to replace the alternator belt. After the replacement, regularly inspect the new belt for tension as well.

Replace the starter when needed

The starter is used only a few times a day, but it is the largest power user in your vehicle’s electrical system making it the most critical in the car’s operation. Don’t be too quick to associate a vehicle that won’t start with a weak or faulty battery. Sometimes, you could be having a bad starter. You might, therefore, need to take it for service, or ultimately change the starter. While replacing the starter isn’t a complicated process, ensuring that it is installed properly is necessary to make sure it is operating effectively.

Your car’s electrical system is important. Very important. Therefore, staying informed about its health and performance should never be compromised. A minor problem like a leaking battery can wreak havoc on other components like the starter and alternator thus affecting the efficiency of your car. Take proper care of your car’s electrical system and avoid the hefty professional fees to fix your car now and then.

Four Common Car Electrical Warning Signs That You Should Know

dash boardYour car’s electrical system has several components that include the starter, alternator, the battery, battery cables and in the most modern vehicles, the computer system. The complicated nature of these components requires the use of specialized diagnostic equipment to ascertain the root cause of the underlying issues. Unlike mechanical problems where the brakes squeak and the engine rattles, electrical problems are subtle and troubleshooting the particular component that has developed problems might be difficult. To help you know what to look out for when such happens, below are signs to warn you that something with the car’s electrical system is amiss.

The car won’t start

This is probably the most common and problematic electrical issue in most cars. If your car doesn’t start, the problem can be narrowed down to either the battery, the alternator or the starter. To ascertain the case, turn the key, and if you hear a clicking noise, it means the current flow getting to the starter isn’t enough to engage due to a dead or discharged battery. If you turn the key and the interior lights turn on, but the car won’t start, then you have a problematic alternator. If you, however, hear a grinding noise during cranking, the culprit is a bad starter.

A leaking battery

Make it a habit to regularly check for corrosion stains, and acid build up around the terminals that might prevent the connectors from getting power. Such signs signify a battery that is leaking or nearing the end of its life. If the corrosion is minimal, you can remove it with a chemical cleaning solution. However, be sure to use gloves since the battery contents are corrosive and can damage bare skin.

Dim lights

DimlightsA single lighting problem most likely needs a bulb replacement. However, if you are experiencing dim headlights and brake lights, you probably have a wiring problem or malfunctioning electrical components. Dim lights might indicate low system voltage especially if you have an old battery that is charging slowly or having trouble holding charge. Another reason could be a loose alternator belt that prevents the alternator from working efficiently and maintaining the optimal battery voltage. If you are not comfortable fixing the alternator yourself, call for a technician who will further test for faulty components in your car.

A burning smell

Does your car have ‘plastic or rubbery’ burning smell? Such smell is caused by an electrical component in your car that has shorted out. When a component shorts, it draws more power than it needs and this causes heating up and eventually melting the plastic insulation around it. It’s therefore paramount to never ignore any burning smell or smoke emanating from your car-because anything burning is a potentially dangerous issue.

Your car has dozens of electrical components that continually send power to the car system to ensure your daily commute is not interrupted. If one of these parts fails, it keeps your car from running. Be on the lookout for these common yet problematic signs that indicate potential car electrical problems. The good news is that, most electrical problems are comparatively affordable and easy to fix.

5 Basic Car Battery Care Tips You Should Know

BatteryJust like a morning cup of coffee rejuvenates you for the day, so does a car battery provide your vehicle the electrifying juice to spring into action. These small magical boxes are the lifeline of your car and therefore keeping them working at peak performance is crucial. Ideally, most car batteries have an average lifespan of 3-4 years but factors like excessive humidity, high temperatures among other environmental conditions could highly impact on how long they serve you. However, let’s assume ideal conditions – perfect temperatures and fair humidity. A few basic car battery care tips can save you an expensive service, tow charges and worst of all, the nightmare of getting stranded in the middle of nowhere.

Regularly check the water levels

Since car batteries need enough acid-water (electrolyte) ratio to function perfectly, make it a habit to check the water levels every 2 to 3 months.   In the case where water is needed, be sure to use clean distilled water and be careful not overfill the battery cells.

Charge your battery fully

Are you the type that only takes short trips once in a while? Most likely, your car battery never charges enough during the short drives. The result can be a discharged battery that can embarrassingly leave you stranded and begging for a boost. Obtain an automatic charger and leave your battery to fully charge for several hours.

Clean the cables and battery posts

Did you know that rust free terminals are good conductors of electricity? Therefore, clean them regularly. Start by removing the connectors on the battery terminals and then loosening them with a wrench. Using a wire brush, scrape off any visible corrosion on the terminals and finally make them shine by brushing them with a baking soda paste. To protect the terminals from regular corrosion, coat them with multi-purpose grease.

Never ignore the insulator

When did you last check whether the car insulator was in place? Insulators protect the water in the battery from evaporating especially in the summer. Always ensure the insulator is in the right position to maximize the effectivity of your battery. In case your car is not equipped with an insulator, buying one is a worthy investment.

Be vigilant on the voltage levels

Normally, a healthy battery has a charge of 12.5 volts but to start the engine, 12.0 volts will do. You might not be aware, but overcharging your phone, leaving lights on or problems with the alternator could be draining your battery life. It is therefore important to be extra vigilant to ensure the voltage levels are ok. Regular professional charge level checkups can also help boost your car battery performance.

Your car battery life depends on two crucial factors; where you live and how you take care of the battery. Since you might have no control over the former, caring for your car battery should be on your regular car maintenance checklist. Most importantly, always have your battery checked by a professional during routine vehicle maintenance visits.