How to Extend the Life of Your Car – Auto Maintenance Tips
With every new model year of a vehicle comes a world of new features, systems and general upgrades that help in various ways. But whether it’s helping to improve your car’s engine performance, fuel efficiency, or overall safety, new advancements often means new, more expensive technologies that often lead to even more expensive repairs. Worse yet, while some vehicles are made a little more sturdy than before, many other models are breaking down more frequently than before.
All of this can lead to one thing: out-of-pocket expenses for car repairs. However, by taking the time needed to keep your vehicle in top condition, like following your car’s maintenance schedule, getting regular car washes and more, you can help extend the life of your car for years to come.
How to Extend the Life of Your Car:
- Get an Extended Car Warranty
- Keep up with Routine Car Maintenance
- Drive Carefully
- Know Your Vehicle
- Pay Attention to the Weather
Overall though, what it all boils down to is that failing to take the time to take care of your vehicle and following its recommended maintenance schedule as laid out in your car’s owner’s manual, cars just aren’t lasting as long. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to improve the life of your car—and these easy tips could ultimately save you thousands of dollars in repairs, including:
Keep up with Routine Maintenance
Auto dealerships don’t ask you to come in regularly just so they can get paid for unnecessary service appointments—cars really do need regular maintenance and tune-ups to function at optimal levels. Routine maintenance covers the most basic elements of your vehicle—like getting regular oil changes, tire rotations, and routine checks of various parts and pieces to be sure they’re not wearing down faster than intended.
If you really want to save money, you can learn to do oil changes (and similar repairs) yourself. There’s no way to get out of the cost of paying for supplies, but doing it yourself could significantly cut down on service charges. However, make sure that your auto insurance policy or manufacturer’s auto warranty does not require preventative maintenance to be performed by a certified mechanic. And when it comes to major repairs, always trust a professional, as attempting to tackle these yourself can lead to even more extensive issues and even potentially void your coverage.
How you choose to drive has a major impact on the condition and lifespan of your vehicle. Put simply, being hard on the vehicle causes it to wear down much faster—while taking care to drive smoothly and steadily will ensure each part lasts for as long as possible.
At the same time, consider the types of roads you’re driving on – rough and bumpy paths will do a lot more damage than smooth pavement. If your vehicle isn’t specifically designed for the terrain you’re going over, then you’re going to face a lot of extra expenses. Taking a little extra time to get to your destination will be safer for you and will also be safer for your vehicle.
Know Your Vehicle
This one sounds easier than it is. You drive your vehicle regularly, so you should know how it normally sounds and moves. If there’s a problem—it’s shuddering strangely, it sounds different, or maybe it just doesn’t pick up speed as fast as it used to—then there’s almost certainly a problem somewhere. Take the time to familiarize yourself with your vehicle, including how it handles, sounds, and anything else of note, especially when you know things are working smoothly. That way, if something does go wrong, you’ll be able to pinpoint it sooner than later.
It can also help to know your vehicle’s recommended fluid levels, including essentials like your car’s ideal engine oil level, coolant, antifreeze, brake fluid, power steering fluid, transmission fluid, and more. Knowing this can help you quickly identify any potential issues just by looking at them. Even knowing your vehicle’s recommended tire pressure (PSI) or the correct octane gas can help.
Don’t wait too long to visit an auto repair facility if anything about your vehicle seems incorrect, even if it seems a little off. A total breakdown could hurt other parts of your vehicle and drastically reduce the lifespan of your vehicle, whereas catching problems early can stop them from developing into a major issue.
Pay Attention to the Weather
Harsh weather—particularly hot or cold days, excessive ice, or even abnormal amounts of air pollution—can harm your vehicle in different ways. Even slight temperature changes can impact your car’s battery or tires. Thankfully, there are ways of dealing with various types of weather. First, consider interior protection for your vehicle—a few sunlight-reflecting panels can keep the inside of your vehicle cooler and prevent heat-based damage.
Alternatively, you can store your vehicle inside a garage or otherwise try to insulate it from the worst effects of temperature. Dust is a little harder to deal with, especially when it builds up and clogs your vehicle. Fortunately, regularly cleaning the engine—and replacing the air filters—can ensure that even heavy air pollution doesn’t become a costly problem for you.
Consider an Extended Auto Warranty
Of course, while all of these preventative measures will surely do a lot to extend your vehicle’s life, it isn’t enough to fully safeguard it from costly repairs. No matter how well an automobile was manufactured, it will still eventually fail or break down, which is why many experts suggest protecting your vehicle, especially used vehicles, with an extended auto warranty.
Extended warranty coverage for your car can be surprisingly affordable and give you the peace of mind you need behind the wheel. Instead of waiting for your car to break down, you can put coverage on your vehicle now so that you’re fully covered when it does break down.
Keep Your Car Running Longer with Endurance
With more and more advancements coming each year within the automotive industry and the lack of reliability in some modern cars, drivers are at more of a disadvantage than ever before. In fact, studies have shown that as recently as 2020, the average age of a car on the road was right around 12 years old, meaning that for most, their vehicle is well past the average 3-year/36,000-mile range of most factory warranties. And as most automakers may limit you to purchasing an extended warranty from them while your factory coverage is active, you’re on the hook for paying any expensive repair bills yourself—but not when you’re an Endurance customer.
Whether you have a brand new car, a high-mileage used vehicle, a Canadian Grey Market vehicle, or even one with a salvage or rebuilt title, you can get the breakdown protection you need with Endurance. Even those who drive for rideshare and delivery services like Lyft, Uber and DoorDash can get coverage with Endurance, including the industry-leading Advantage auto protection plan, which combines breakdown coverage with up to $3,500 in yearly maintenance services to help keep any vehicle on the road for longer.
To learn more about how Advantage or any other Endurance protection plan can help you and your vehicle, call our award-winning customer care team at (800) 253-8203 or request a free, no-obligation quote today. And don’t forget to check out the Endurance blog to find other helpful and informative articles on automotive topics like DIY maintenance how-tos, extended warranty explanations and comparisons, vehicle buying guides and much more.
*A Vehicle Service Contract (VSC) is often referred to as an “extended car warranty” but is not an auto warranty. A VSC does, however, provide repair coverage for your vehicle after the manufacturer’s warranty expires. A vehicle service contract is a contract between you and a VSC provider or administrator that states what is a covered repair and what is not. Endurance is an administrator of vehicle service contracts and does not sell car warranties.*
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