The Cost of Neglect
Taking Care of your Car
Periodic checks are needed to ensure that your car performs the way the carmaker intended. Checking the engine oil and the tire pressure, for example, should be included in your calendar. You should also ask your auto repair shop to check the air filter, the constant-velocity-joint boots, inspect the exhaust system, check the fluids, brakes, radiator, and battery. Aside from periodic checks, you should also refer to your car’s maintenance schedule.
Your car will also need some washing every week. Washing the body and hosing out the undercarriage to get rid of dirt is a good idea, according to experts.
When money is tight, it is tempting to avoid car maintenance altogether but doing so is not financially sound. Components wear out faster if they are poorly maintained and what could have been a minor problem can turn into an expensive undertaking. According to the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, “a well-maintained vehicle lasts longer, retains more of its resale value, pollutes less, and gets better mileage than one that’s been neglected.”
What is the difference between synthetic and conventional motor oil?
When it comes to motor oil, you have two main options – conventional or synthetic. The differences between the two begin at the molecular level and continue all the way up to how the oil is manufactured and processed. Conventional oil will cost less than the synthetic but will require more frequent oil changes. If you decide to go with the synthetic motor oil – depending on your driving habits – you can change your oil every 5,000 to 7,500 miles. Here are few key differences to consider when deciding to go with conventional or synthetic oil. Keep in mind, if you have an older, particularly vintage vehicle with the original engine, synthetic oil may NOT be recommended.