April is National Car Care Month, and that means it’s time to give your vehicle the TLC you’ve been putting off during the cold winter months. Proper car care is an important factor in avoiding larger, more costly repairs. Preventative maintenance can help your car stay healthy longer, protecting your investment and keeping you and other drivers on the road safe. The experts at Sears Auto Center recommend the following ten basic maintenance procedures, as put together by the Car Care Council, to help keep your car in top shape.
- Check all fluids, including engine oil, power steering, brake and transmission fluids as well as windshield washer solvent and antifreeze/coolant.
- Check the hoses and belts to make sure they are not cracked, brittle, frayed, loose or showing signs of excessive wear.
- Check the battery and replace if necessary. Make sure the connection is clean, tight and corrosion-free. At Sears Auto Center, we’ll perform a battery check for free to determine if your battery is charging properly.
- Check the brake system annually and have the brake linings, rotors and drums inspected at each oil change.
- Inspect the exhaust system for leaks and damaged or broken supports or hangers if there is an unusual noise. Exhaust leaks can be dangerous and must be corrected without delay.
- Schedule a tune-up to help the engine deliver the best balance of power and fuel economy and produce the lowest level of emissions.
- Check the heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, as proper heating and cooling performance is critical for safety reasons like defrosting as well as interior comfort.
- Inspect the steering and suspension system annually including shock absorbers, struts and chassis parts such as ball joints, tie rod ends and other related components.
- Check the tires, including tire pressure and tread depth. Uneven tread wear indicates a need for wheel alignment; have your tires rotated every 5,000 to 8,000 miles to prevent uneven wear. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots.
- Check the wipers and lighting so that you can see and be seen. Check that all interior and exterior lighting is working properly and replace worn wiper blades so you can see clearly when driving during precipitation. The experts at Sears Auto Center recommend changing your wiper blades every six months.
Whether you DIY or you bring your car into your local Sears Auto Center, make sure to have your vehicle thoroughly inspected this month to prevent costly repairs in the future. If you prefer having someone else inspect your car, bring it in to Sears Auto Center today for a free multi-point inspection and we’ll help you keep your car safe and dependable.
Visit SearsAuto.com for the location nearest you and to schedule an appointment. For more information on National Car Care Month, visit CarCare.Org.