Tire maintenance & safety

A Health and Safety Check for Your Car

A regular health check is essential to maintain the safety of your car, and spot any problems that may arise from time to time. It is highly advisable that you run a standard test of various vital mechanical elements of your car periodically. Also, it ensures the best chance of your survival in an accident. Regular health checks can spot problems as soon as they become apparent. They also help you save on the mechanic’s bill.

Periodical health checks also ensure that your car is in top roadworthy condition. They minimize the chance of mechanical failure whilst you are driving. The most basic check you should conduct is a break test. Before testing the brakes ensure that you are safely ahead of any cars behind. Then apply relatively firm pressure to the breaks. This would help you get a feel for the responsiveness of the brake pads. If you find that breaking is getting slightly sluggish, there can be considerable erosion of the brake pads. In this case, it is advisable that you seek professional assistance.

If you find that your car pulls to one side when you apply brakes it indicates that there is some serious problem and it is time to take it for repair. If the brake pedal sinks to the floor when pressure is applied or if you hear or feel scraping or grinding when you apply the brake, it means that there is some problem with the brakes’ mechanism and it needs to be checked out.

Another basic check you should make is the condition of your tires. Check the thickness of the tread on the tires and the tire pressure. Also check if the tires are out of alignment, which may happen from time to time. A mechanic can solve this problem without too much hassle.

Maintaining oil levels in the engine ensures the smooth running of your car’s machinery. Insufficient oil levels can cause serious problems in any car. So it is imperative that you check oil levels regularly and rectify any deficiencies.

It is better to have an awareness of how your car functions mechanically. A good mechanic can tell you what is essential for the well-being of the vital mechanical components of the vehicle.

Sometimes you may feel like the car is difficult to handle or you find the ride less smooth and stable. These symptoms are always indicative of a problem and your car needs immediate attention. Sometimes you feel a vibration that was not there before. It indicates that your tires need balancing. It is also advisable that you check your shock absorbers periodically. If they do not function properly, your car starts riding strangely.

Your car becomes harder to steer when your front wheels are misaligned or you have worn out steering parts. Sometimes you feel that your car wants to pull to the right or left. This also happens when your tires are not properly inflated. But it could also mean that your front wheels are misaligned or damaged in some way. In this case, it is advisable that you seek professional help.

Engine trouble occurs in various ways. Sometimes you find that your car is hard to start. Other indicators of engine trouble include the car engine running after you remove the key and the car stalling abruptly. Poor acceleration and fewer miles may also indicate engine trouble.

Transmission problems often cause a delayed response when shifting from neutral to drive or reverse gear. Sometimes you may find that your car does not shift during regular acceleration. Also, if you find the shifting hard, there could be a problem with the transmission. When you encounter one of these problems ask your mechanic to check if it is just a disconnected hose problem or see if the filter is plugged. These repairs are, of course, much simpler and cheaper than replacing your transmission.

Tire pressure is very often neglected by car owners. Most people assume that their tires are fine because they look okay. Most people don’t know that proper tire pressure is closely associated with their gas mileage. Proper tire pressure also makes your brakes and suspension system last longer.

The American Automobile Association (AAA) recommends that you have your tire pressure and condition checked for safety every time you visit the gas station to fill up your gas tank. It is also advisable that you check the condition of your tires prior to any long drives or vacations.

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