Cleaning Your Car’s Interior - All Car Leasing

Car Maintenance And Servicing

Your New Car: Unspoken Maintenance Essentials

Congratulations on your new car! Beyond the excitement of driving it off the forecourt, there are a few unspoken maintenance tasks that will ensure it stays in top shape for years to come. Whether you're a car enthusiast or not, understanding these key checks and services will save you money and headaches down the road.

Service vs. Maintenance: What's the Difference?

Let's clear up some confusion:

    • Servicing: This is a comprehensive check-up typically done by a mechanic. They'll replace worn parts, diagnose potential issues, change spark plugs, and more. Think of it as a professional health exam for your car.
    • Maintenance: These are smaller checks you can often do yourself. Some are obvious (like making sure your headlights work), while others are easy to forget (like checking tyre pressure). Regular maintenance prevents minor issues from turning into major problems.

Start with Your Owner's Manual

Before you pop the hood, take 10 minutes to browse your car's owner's manual. It's a treasure trove of information, including:

    • Recommended service intervals
    • Ideal tyre pressure
    • Correct fluids to use

Knowing these details will make your maintenance tasks much easier.

Don't Let Your Tank Run Dry

It sounds obvious, but many drivers push their luck with low fuel levels. This is a bad habit for a few reasons:

    • Stress: Running out of gas is a major inconvenience, especially on long trips.
    • Engine Damage: Low fuel can cause debris to build up in the tank, potentially clogging the fuel pump and filter.

Fill up regularly to avoid these problems.

Check Your Tyres Regularly

Your tyres are your car's only contact with the road, so they deserve your attention. Every two to four weeks, check for:

    • Cuts or bulges
    • Proper pressure (refer to your owner's manual)
    • Adequate tread depth (1.6mm minimum, 3mm recommended in winter)

Most newer cars have a tyre pressure monitoring system, but it's still wise to check manually.

Keep an Eye on Your Brakes

Brakes are essential for safety, so make sure your brake fluid is topped up to the correct level. You can also visually inspect your brake pads: look through the spokes of the wheel for a pad pressed against the brake disc. Ideally, you should see at least 3mm of pad remaining. If not, it's time for a professional check.

Don't Forget Your Battery

Car batteries typically last three to five years. Check the terminals every few months to ensure they're tight and clean. If you rarely drive your car, run the engine for 15 minutes weekly or invest in a battery charger to prevent it from going flat.

Wash Regularly to Protect Your Paint

Washing your car isn't just about aesthetics; it protects the paintwork from dirt and grime. If you wash by hand, pay extra attention to the headlights and windows.

Top Up Your Fluids

Your car relies on several fluids to function properly, including brake fluid, oil, and coolant. While your dashboard may warn you when levels are low, it's a good practice to check them monthly.

Remember: By taking a few minutes each month for these simple checks, you'll be well on your way to enjoying a long and trouble-free relationship with your new car. Safe driving!