By Mary Asujo
Over the last century, cars and trucks have made some of the most important contributions to people around the world. However, many people still think of their vehicles as little more than complex and expensive appliances. According to Peter Kabango a mechanic in Ntinda, no matter what you use your car for, you rely on it to keep your daily activities running smoothly. That is why it is always essential to have a basic car maintenance checklist you should know and follow.
“Whether you own a brand new vehicle or a Japanese used car, there are many things you can do on your own. However, there are also some things that are best left in the hands of professionals, like when you are handling a fleet of Japanese trucks,” says Kabango. He adds that after all, there are common car maintenance mistakes you should avoid. So, before anything else, it’s best to study your car manual and follow the suggested maintenance schedule.
Jack Mutumba who runs a garage in Rubaga gives you an overview of how you should take care of your vehicle. Here are some basic care procedures you should not ignore.
Car engine oil
A lot of people think that oil in the engine helps the vehicle burn fuel. The reality is that it’s essential in cooling, lubricating and cleaning your engine. So, if your car does not have enough oil, these three things can happen to your car: compressive heating- soot and tar, Thermal degradation- Carbonaceous and lacquer deposits, Oxidation-sludge and vanish.
The aforementioned will start to collect in your engine, causing friction in parts where oil should normally flow. When this happens, the oils start to do the opposite of what it’s supposed to do. It will start creating heat and friction to the Cylinder walls, the engine, rings, and bearings, among other things. Eventually, more deposits will collect, leading to a dirtier engine.
Aside from the engine oil, every car owner should remember to check and maintain the various fluids in their car. This will help keep their vehicle running smoothly. it is worth noting that this is something anyone can do on their own. These are the five essential car fluids; engine oil, coolant, power steering fluid, brake fluid and windshield washer fluid.
Windshield wiper bladders
Have you ever experienced driving in the rain with your windshield wipers not properly functioning? Every car owner knows that it wouldn’t’ be a pleasant experience. Many people easily forget about taking care of their wipers. They only realize how important these components are once they are in a tight crunch. So, for your wipers to provide their optimum performance, you should ensure that their bladders are in perfect condition. In general, they should be replaced every six months. However, it’s best to consult your vehicle’s manual first.
Many car owners think that checking the tyre pressure is not as important as other maintenance procedures. However, they are wrong. It’s worth noting that the tyre pressure is one of the essential safety features of your vehicle. Keep in mind that when the tyre pressure is low, its surface will touch most of the ground, creating friction between the tire and the road. This will cause the tires to wear out fast.
Another key thing to remember is that low tyre pressure may lead to tread separation, which is a big accident risk. However, you should be cautious not to overdo tyre pressure. After all, too much air in your tyres is not good. The ride can be bumpier because less tyre surface is touching the ground. It can also cause you to misjudge the road conditions when slamming your car brakes.