Before setting out on any journey there are a number of basic maintenance checks which should take place on your car, for example have you enough fuel, water etc? In addition to this there are additional maintenance checks which should be scheduled periodically to keep your car running as efficiently as it may.
Schedule these in your diary and if you aren’t experienced enough or confident enough to deal with these tasks yourself, be sure to mention them when you take your car in for a service, or before if you notice a lack of performance.
The Fuel Filter
Suggested replace time: Approximately every two years or 26000 miles.
Located under the hood or even inside the fuel tank dependant on the car type, the fuel filter is in continuous use so is bound to need changing at some point. Its main task is to be on duty whenever the car is running to prevent clogging up in the injectors. This is usually a task for a qualified mechanic.
The Power Steering Fluid
Suggested replace time: Check every time you change the engine oil and refill to manufacturers guidelines if necessary.
If your car has power steering then having enough fluid which lubricates the system and keeps it working efficiently is essential. Checking periodically as part of your regularly basic maintenance is important however if you feel resistance when driving check and see a mechanic, especially if your levels are dropping quicker than they should.
Suggested replace time: Replace every two to three years as appropriate.
Your battery is working constantly when driving and while cleaning terminals and making checks regularly is important eventually the battery unit will need to be replaced. If you do find yourself needing to do this always go with manufacturer guidelines and ensure that you get the very best battery for your money to ensure you receive the maximum battery output in the most efficient way.
Suggested replace time: every 50k to 100k miles.
Your spark plugs are what fires up the fuel and air in the cylinders, getting your engine going and you on your way. How often your spark plugs would need to be replaced varies wildly on the type of car and engine you have however it is worth keeping an eye open, especially if you feel you are not getting as much out of your mileage as you were as this is a key indicator for run-down spark plugs.
Suggested replace time: Every five to ten years, dependant on mileage or when tread is nearing legal limits.
Worn down tires will dramatically affect your driving, especially in wet or icy conditions or in areas where you really need to have a decent tread. Driving without the minimum required level of tread is also a driving violation and may result in a hefty fine so keep an eye on your tires and have them checked as soon as it becomes apparent that they need to be refreshed.