December 8, 2023 | Kaddy Gibson

Car Maintenance Mistakes to Avoid

The Importance Of Routine Car Maintenance

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Let’s talk car maintenance.

We all know that little warning light on the dashboard can be pretty annoying, but ignoring it can lead to bigger headaches down the road (pun intended).

Routine maintenance isn’t just about avoiding breakdowns—it’s also about extending your vehicle’s life, improving fuel efficiency, and ensuring your safety on the road.

Here are some common maintenance mistakes that can easily be rectified and help keep your vehicle in tip top shape.

Skipping Regular Oil Changes

Things needed for an oil changeMídia, Pexels

Skilling regular oil changes is like running a marathon without water—it’ll wear your engine out faster than you can say, “check the dipstick”.

Check your manufacturer’s guide for the recommended oil and schedule. Your engine will thank you with longevity and better performance.

Neglecting Tire Care

Checking tire pressureNew Africa, Adobe Stock

Tires are extremely important. Both under-inflated and over-inflated tires are bad news.

Check your tire pressure regularly. Properly inflated tires will improve fuel efficiency, extend tire life, and improve handling.

Also, don’t forget to rotate your tires periodically to maintain proper balance and distribute wear evenly.

Forgetting Brake Maintenance

Brake PadsAdobe

Don’t ignore those squeaky brakes or that pulsating pedal.

Brake pads and rotors wear out, and ignoring it can lead to even more costly repairs—or worse, brake failure.

Get those brakes checked and serviced as needed.


Ignoring the Check Engine Light

Check Engine LightTexoma

The check engine light may be annoying, but it’s important because it’s trying to tell you something. It’s worth it to get a diagnostic check done to determine the issue before bigger issues arise.

Not Replacing Air Filters

Air filterAdobe

A dirty air filter will suffocate your engine, resulting in decreased performance and fuel efficiency. Your owner’s manual will recommend exactly how often to replace your air filters. However, replacing them regularly will help keep airflow smooth and your engine happy.

Neglecting Fluid Levels

Car Fluid LevelsNapa Canada

Your vehicle’s fluids need regular checks. This includes: coolant, transmission fluid, and brake fluid.

Low levels or dirty fluids can cause engine overheating or transmission problems. Keep them topped up, and fresh.

Overlooking Timing Belt Replacement

Friends For Never factsShutterstock

Don't play Russian roulette with your timing belt. If it snaps, it can cause severe engine damage. Follow the manufacturer's recommended replacement schedule to keep your engine purring.

Failing to Replace Spark Plugs

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Worn out spark plugs can cause poor fuel efficiency, misfires, and rough idling. Replace them on schedule to keep your engine running well.

Neglecting Battery Maintenance

Car BatteryPexels

Dead batteries often strike at the most inconvenient times. Be sure to check your battery for corrosion, make sure it is secure, and replace it when it’s nearing the end of its lifespan.


DIY Gone Wrong

Man repairing car in garageKONSTANTIN_SHISHKIN, Shutterstock

Car repairs can be more complex than you may think. We all love a good DIY project, but some things are better left to the pros. Messing up a repair can end up costing more than hiring the mechanic in the first place.

Final Thoughts

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Car maintenance may seem like a chore, but its important in making sure your vehicle stays running smoothly.

These common mistakes can happen to any of us, but now that you know what to watch out for, you’re ready to be a car maintenance superstar.

So, go ahead and show your car some love, and enjoy the smooth rides ahead!