5 tips to prolong the life of your car
Here at Sell Your Problem Car ® we come across expensive-to-fix car problems all the time.
Some are caused by road accidents, and others because of unforeseen engine failure – but you’d probably be surprised at how many are caused by careless driving habits.
So let’s take a look at 5 simple driving and vehicle care tips to prolonging the life of your car. Keep your car in a better condition for longer and avoid any paying for unnecessary repairs.
1. Avoid speeding
If you have a new car, it’s important to be patient during the ‘break-in’ period. This tends to last for the first 1,000 miles or so, and you should go easy as your car adjusts to being on the road for the first time.
Decrease the chance of premature wear by accelerating lightly. Don’t exceed 3,000 rpm and try not to drive the car any faster than 55 to 60 miles an hour, which is the engine’s optimal cruising speed.
2. Stop riding the clutch
This is one of those driving habits that many people find themselves falling prey to – but most aren’t aware of the unnecessary wear and damage they’re causing to the clutch.
Holding the car with the clutch while you’re waiting in traffic, or resting your foot on the clutch and keeping it partially disengaged greatly increases the wear that the clutch receives, which in turn decreases the clutch’s lifespan – and a new clutch could cost several hundred pounds to replace.
So if you’re stood still, use the parking brake and switch to neutral.
3. Read the car’s manual
Your car’s manual actually contains a surprising amount of information about recommended maintenance scheduling and which products you should be using (i.e. which oils are recommended).
Ignore this advice at your own peril.
A quick flick through could save you some extremely costly problems down the line.
4. Maintain tyre pressure
Regularly checking your car’s tyre pressure is important – but it’s not something we do nearly enough.
Check to see the correct tyre air pressure (you’ll find your manufacturer’s recommended pressure on the sidewall of the tyre) and be careful not to adjust the wheel’s pressure by any more than 25% outside of the baseline.
A common misconception is that putting more air into the tyre will help to protect it against road impact. In fact, over-inflating you tyres can be worse than not having enough air pressure, since they’ll transfer more energy from an impact to the wheels, potentially damaging them.
5. Wash and wax your car
Rust damage can be extremely expensive to fix – and it can form and spread very quickly, so it pays to act fast.
Ideally, try clean your car every two weeks and wax every four to prevent any rust from developing. If it’s wet, and there’s lots of salt on the roads, you might want to think about washing it more often, since salt actually speeds up the rate of rusting.
And if you notice a small problem in the paintwork, don’t let it develop. Get it treated as soon as possible before things get too costly.