Cars & Vehicles Auto Parts & Maintenance & Repairs

Basic Car Repair and Maintenance

Car repair these days can cost a lot for the owner. This often prompts the car driver to tackle the repairs themselves in order to ease up on the costs that can accumulate when bringing the vehicle to a service garage. Usually, the driver notices that something is wrong when he hears or feels something different with the vehicle he is driving. The feel of the moving car as well as any unusual noise can indicate something is wrong with it. When noise and a wrong feeling with the way the vehicle is moving is combined, it is best to not use it for a while and to have a look to see if whatever is wrong is visible.

Noise is often the first indicator that something is wrong with the automobile. The best thing for the driver to do is to observe when the unusual noise occurs. Is it when turning the wheel or driving straight? Is it when stepping on the brakes? When the area has been located, jack up the vehicle and have a look under it to see if something is amiss. Those with some idea regarding engines and vehicles can probably spot what is wrong just by feeling around and with a visual check. Loose nuts and bolts on the tires can be dangerous and these should be tightened before any accident can occur. Another aspect of car repair is checking to see if there are any loose hanging parts in the general vicinity of the noise. Brakes can loosen as well as other cables which are crucial to the vehicle's ability to function.

Smell, smoke and steam can also indicate something wrong with the automobile. A burning smell can indicate a possible overheating problem with the radiator or burning brakes. On the other hand, it can also come from other vehicles, especially when the windows are opened during the drive. If the burning smell prevails for several miles, it is best to stop and check the gauges for overheating or to check the wheels for smoking brakes. Overheating is a delicate problem which cannot be easily solved by just pouring in coolant. The safer solution to this is to turn off the engine and wait for it to cool down before adding the coolant. The other is best done when the engine has not yet overheated but the gauge is indicating that it is going there. Leave the engine on and then take off the cap of the radiator. If steam is already coming from it, do not touch anything and turn off the engine because hot water may come spraying out from it when it is opened and injure anyone in the vicinity. This is actually not a good idea if the driver has no idea what to do. Always check the gauges while driving to see if something is amiss. Check the radiator for coolant level as well as brake fluid and other fluids levels regularly.

Feeling something bumpy or gritty when driving is also another indicator that something is wrong with the vehicle. A flat tire can make the vehicle difficult to turn or maneuver as well as make the ride bumpier. When this happens, pull over to the side and check the tires. Do not attempt to run on a virtually flat tire because this can shred the tire and damage the rims if the distance is quite far to the car repair garage.

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