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March 11, 2014

Top 10 Car Maintenance Mistakes

Routine maintenance is the key to longevity for a car. Using low-quality parts and neglecting the necessary upkeep of your vehicle could lead to major issues in the long run. Properly maintaining your vehicle may actually decrease the amount of money spent on repairs. Here are the top 10 car maintenance mistakes.

10. Using Premium Gas in a Non-Performance Engine
Some drivers are under the impression that premium fuel equates to better performance. If the owner’s manual for your vehicle recommends regular gas, a higher octane will not increase the power output of the engine. Higher octane may actually lower the fuel economy.

9. Failing to Check the Fluid Levels
Although most drivers understand the importance of checking the motor oil, it is equally important to check the levels of the other fluids. This includes the transmission fluid, coolant, brake fluid, and power steering fluid.

8. Neglecting to Change Burned-Out Bulbs
A burned-out bulb dramatically compromises your on-road safety. Furthermore, there is a good chance that your vehicle will be pulled over by the local police.

7. Using the Wrong Motor Oil
Every engine is designed to use a specific viscosity of motor oil. While excessively thick oil can lead to hard starting and decreased gas mileage, thin motor oil can cause some engines to leak.

6. Carrying Around Too Much Weight
The average passenger car is not designed to carry around lots of extra weight. Unless you are headed on a trip, try to minimize the number of items that are stored within the vehicle.

5. Driving with Low Tire Pressure
Some drivers never check the tire pressure. Low tire pressure contributes to premature tread wear and lowers the vehicle’s fuel economy. Under-inflated tires are also much more likely to experience a blowout.

4. Reusing Old Air Filters
Although there are reusable air filters on the market, most air filters have a limited lifespan. A dirty air filter will significantly reduce a vehicle’s performance.

3. Abruptly Pressing the Brake Pedal
During normal driving situations, the brake pedal only needs to be pressed lightly. Aggressively stomping on the brake pedal puts a lot of unnecessary stress on the braking system.

2. Failing to Change the Motor Oil
In the eyes of some automotive experts, changing the motor oil is the best way to extend the life of an engine. Over time, old oil can cause a number of issues including a clogged oil pump and dry-rotting of the engine seals.

1. Failing to Find a Good Mechanic
There are some repairs that are best performed by a trained automotive technician. Attempting to tackle difficult repairs on your own could lead to a lot of frustration and wasted money.

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