How to Keep Your Car Running Strong for 10+ Years
With proper maintenance, modern cars can last for well over a decade, if not longer. Regular car care is a wise investment, as it can save you money in the long run by preventing costly or recurring repairs. At Jacked Up Truck & Jeep Outfitters, we are committed to helping you maximize the longevity of your Jeep or truck and get the best possible value.
Preventative Maintenance: The Key to a Long-lasting Vehicle
While regular car maintenance may seem like an added cost in the short term, it can help you keep your car in better condition for longer than those who don't prioritize automotive care. This can save you money in the long run by preventing major system failures and unplanned repairs.
Regular car maintenance is an investment that can pay off in the long run. By keeping your car in good condition, you can prevent costly repairs and extend its lifespan. This can also lead to a higher resale value if you ever decide to sell your car.
Automotive Fluids & Oil Changes
Motor Oil Change
An oil change is a simple and essential maintenance procedure that helps keep your car running smoothly and efficiently. Fresh oil lubricates engine parts, prevents overheating, and reduces friction, which can lead to improved gas mileage.
Over time, motor oil breaks down and becomes less effective. This can lead to sludge buildup, which can damage engine components and decrease fuel economy. To avoid these problems, it is important to change your oil according to the manufacturer's recommended schedule. By sticking to a regular oil change schedule, you can help keep your car running for years to come. You'll also save money on repairs and maintenance as well as enjoy better gas mileage.
Brake Fluid Change
Brake fluid is a critical component of your vehicle's braking system. It transfers the force from your foot to the brakes, which allows your vehicle to slow or stop. Over time, brake fluid can become contaminated or absorb moisture, which can reduce its effectiveness. It is important to change your brake fluid according to the manufacturer's recommendations, which typically range from every two to three years.
If you notice any problems with your brakes, such as abnormal performance, it is important to have your car checked by a qualified mechanic.
Check Your Coolant
Coolant or antifreeze serves a crucial role in preventing engine overheating and freezing within the cooling system. Just like brake fluid, manufacturers recommend varying service intervals, ranging from a few years to checking it during scheduled maintenance.
To ensure there are no leaks, it's important to keep a vigilant eye on the coolant level. If you ever notice the engine temperature warning light illuminating, it could be a sign of insufficient coolant or a problem with its quality.
Automotive Part Replacements
Throughout the lifespan of your vehicle, it is necessary to replace the brake pads and rotors. The timing for this replacement is influenced by various factors, such as the frequency of braking while driving and the initial thickness of the pads and rotors.
If you reside in an urban area and frequently encounter stop-and-go traffic, your brakes will experience faster wear compared to someone who primarily drives on highways or rural roads with fewer stops. It is recommended to replace the brake pads when the remaining pad thickness measures 1/4 inch or less.
Car Battery Maintenance
Typically, car batteries have an average lifespan of 2 to 6 years. However, this can be influenced by factors such as outdoor temperature, driving frequency, and overall usage. While certain factors like the environment are beyond your control, there are steps you can take to maximize the battery's lifespan in your specific area. To ensure a longer battery life, here are a few helpful tips:
- Ensure your battery remains clean and free of debris.
- Avoid leaving your vehicle unused for extended periods of time.
- Remember to turn off the interior lights and headlights when your vehicle is not in use.
Most modern vehicles come equipped with plastic headlights that have a protective film installed by the manufacturer. Over time, this protective film oxidizes, resulting in foggy headlights and reduced nighttime visibility. Oxidation occurs due to various factors, such as heat, sunlight, pollution, and exposure to harsh chemicals. To slow down the oxidation process, it is advisable to park your vehicle in a garage whenever possible.
Replacing headlights in pairs is recommended. If the headlights were originally installed together, the failure or dimness of one headlight indicates that the other is likely to fail soon as well. Additionally, having a new and bright headlight alongside an older and dimmer one can be distracting to other drivers.
Air Filter Replacement
To maintain engine efficiency and prevent debris buildup, it is crucial to regularly replace your engine air filter. The recommended replacement intervals vary depending on the environment, typically falling between 15,000 and 30,000 miles (24,140-48,280 km). Check the condition of your engine air filter regularly, especially if you frequently drive in cities or dusty areas.
For a cleaner and healthier breathing environment, follow the recommended schedule for changing the cabin air filter. Just like the engine air filter, the replacement intervals depend on a number of factors. It is a good practice to have your filters inspected during engine diagnostics or other automotive services.
Oil Filter Change
When it comes to oil filters, it is important to refer to your owner's manual for the recommended replacement schedule. Different manufacturers may suggest different approaches, such as replacing the oil filter with every oil change, replacing it every other oil change, or at different specified intervals.
Tires and Wheels
Regularly inspecting your vehicle's alignment can help to maximize tire lifespan and performance. Hitting a pothole or curb can easily misalign your car. If you observe uneven treadwear or your vehicle veers to the left or right instead of maintaining a straight path within a lane, it may be indicating a potential need for a wheel alignment. A wheel alignment adjustment addresses the camber, toe, and caster angles, restoring proper alignment and ensuring optimal vehicle handling.
Maximize the lifespan of your tires by rotating them. Tire rotation involves swapping the position of each tire on your vehicle. This is necessary because the stress on each tire is not evenly distributed by your vehicle. By exchanging the front and rear tires, you ensure even treadwear.
The specific rotation pattern may differ based on your vehicle and tires. Regular tire rotations eliminate the need for replacing tires at different intervals or experiencing decreased performance due to uneven treadwear among your tires.
Simple Driving Tips
Reduce Stop-and-Go Driving
Frequent short trips can be detrimental to fuel efficiency and add unnecessary wear to your automotive components. To conserve resources and extend the lifespan of your vehicle, consider consolidating errands or taking longer routes whenever possible.
Take Care of Your Car & It Will Take Care of You
By adhering to these tips and the service intervals provided in your owner's manual, you can protect yourself against costly repairs and unforeseen failures. Proper vehicle maintenance:
- Saves you money in the long term.
- Improves safety for you and your passengers
- Preserves manufacturer warranties
- Prolongs the life of your vehicle
- Reduces the chances of unexpected automotive repairs
Rely on Jacked Up Truck & Jeep Outfitters for your preventative automotive maintenance needs. Our comprehensive range of automotive services provides quality repairs and maintenance for Jeeps and other truck makes and models throughout Austin, Round Rock, Leander, and nearby areas of Texas.