Here’s how to keep your engine and tyres in tip-top shape!

Published by on . Updated on 30 Jun 2024

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1714705739812 Editors Images 1679977267633 Servicing Featured

A clean bill of your car’s mechanical health is crucial if you’d like to drastically minimise the chances of an inconvenient mechanical malfunction. Ensuring all your oily bits are kept in optimal shape is cheap insurance against expensive repairs.

There are many, well-documented examples online about how some car owners have achieved some truly mind boggling mileage numbers with their vehicles. And most of them have done so without the need for expensive engine overhauls.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1714705892309 Editors Images 1679977581358 I Stock 1449618908On the flip side, you also regularly hear horror stories about how some car owners struggle to keep their daily drivers reliable. These cars may have needed multiple extensive refreshes, requiring lengthy parts lists, just to be kept on the road.

The drastically contrasting fortunes of the vehicles mentioned above has to do with how they are maintained. But how can you ensure your car is in tip-top shape?

Visual inspection

As we all know, oil is the lifeblood of your engine. Low oil levels can increase the friction sustained by the various engine components, which may lead to premature failure. Check for any leaks with your vehicle parked - the differences in fluid colour will hint at different points of failure in your drivetrain.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1714705940322 Editors Images 1679977457004 I Stock 1136400107Light brown or black fluid indicates a leak in your engine oil system. Red or dark brown fluid is a sign that you’re losing transmission lubrication. A puddle of yellow liquid may indicate a leak in your power steering system. Odourless and colourless fluid is typically the result of aircond condenser - so nothing to worry about!

Pay attention to your dashboard

The warning symbols on your cluster can tell you a lot about the state of your car’s mechanical health. These lights often hint at a general area of concern in your vehicle, which can greatly help your mechanic to resolve the problem.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1714706018975 Editors Images 1679977502239 I Stock 534108978Most modern vehicles have additional software built into either their cluster displays and/or the infotainment screen, which then provides specific information about the ailing components. Older vehicles can benefit from an external OBDII reader, which is a useful tool in diagnosing areas of concern.

Tyre balancing and rotation

Your front and rear tyres wear out at different rates. A typical commuter car is front-wheel drive, and with a heavy engine up front, the tyres are subjected to significantly more wear. This will eventually lead to a reduction of grip, reducing the lifespan of your tyres.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1714706072809 Editors Images 1679977174533 LimtayarrotationFor more even tyre wear, ensure that you rotate your tyres as recommended by your manufacturer. This helps to maximise the lifespan of your entire tyre set, reducing cost whilst increasing the overall level of safety.

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