It’s hard to believe when many are still experiencing cold weather and snow that spring break is here again. Whether you are planning an awesome road trip with your friends to a far-off, warmer, destination or just plan to stay at home and relax now is a great time to go through that car maintenance checklist. We rely on our vehicles so much to get us where we need to go, the best automotive advice we can follow is to stay on top of routine maintenance. This way we can usually avoid major fixes down the road.

One of the first things that you should check is the tires. It may seem inconsequential now, but tires suffer a lot of wear and tear on the roads so it’s important to check for proper tire pressure and signs of excessive wear . By doing this on a weekly or bi-weekly basis you can dramatically extend the life of your tires and improve your fuel efficiency. If you begin to notice your vehicle pulling to one side or the other you can also look into aligning your tires and/or getting them rotated.

Next you can move under the hood . There are many important components under the hood but don’t feel overwhelmed. Checking the levels for the power steering fluid, engine coolant, transmission fluid, brake fluid, and windshield wiper fluid will keep your vehicle running smoothly and help prevent bigger problems down the road. It is also important to check oil level and every 3 months or 3000 miles take your vehicle in for an oil change. If you take your vehicle in to a mechanic for an oil change it’s also a good idea to have them check the belts and fans for signs of wear. Also, this is a good time to check your windshield wiper blades. Especially if you live in an area that is sunny and doesn’t receive much rain, they can become rotted and quite ineffective when you need them. The video below shows you how to do an oil change yourself.

Your vehicle’s owner’s manual is a great guide for routine maintenance. In it you can usually find a list of recommended items for your specific item and can help you identify potential problem areas before they become big problems.

Vehicle ownership can at times be expensive and time consuming but maintaining a routine maintenance schedule and doing what you can to take care of your vehicle now can save you a lot of money and hassle down the road.

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