We here at What’s Neue understand that a car is a big investment, and we’d like to help you protect that investment by sharing with you some car maintenance tips.

Look, we get it. Car maintenance may not exactly be on the top of your to-do list, but it is something that you have to deal with.

After all, proper car maintenance will help prolong the lifespan of your beloved car and save you from unnecessary repair bills.

#1. Check battery

Ideally, the best time to replace your battery is before it dies. Every battery will eventually come to the point where it cannot hold enough of a charge to start a car. That can happen because of normal wear, a leak that has developed, or corrosion on the connections.

Two of the most common signs of a weak battery are:

Dim headlights – If your car battery is failing, it’s not going to be able to fully power your vehicle’s electrical components – including your headlights. If you notice that your headlights seem dim and weaker than usual, take note! Not only is the reduced light a safety issue, but it also means your car battery is almost at the end of its lifecycle.

Clicking sound when you turn the key – When you turn your key in the ignition, your car battery sends a current to an electrical component, called the starter solenoid, to get things going. A failing battery will have difficulty performing this function and the electrical current sent to the starter will be weaker. When the starter receives reduced or insufficient power from the battery, it often makes the clicking noise you’re hearing.

#2. Check fluidsGet into the habit of checking car fluids along with the tyres. When the engine cools down, open the hood and remove the oil dipstick.

Clean the dipstick thoroughly and put it back again. When you pull it out now, you’ll notice the oil is up to a certain level. Check and see whether the oil is at the correct level. Also, replace the oil at regular periods.

While doing so, also check the fluid level of your power steering, the hoses and belts for any signs of wear. Also, check the transmission fluid level after warming up your car.

#3. Check wipersWiper blades aren’t the most interesting part of a vehicle. But they do play an integral role by keeping you safe when driving in the rain. So, it makes perfect sense to ensure your vehicle’s wiper blades are performing as they should.

Over time, the rubber on a wiper blade will deteriorate, sometimes to the point where it will start to come away from the blade itself. In addition, as they come towards the end of their working life, you may notice they smear water on your windscreen.

#4. Check brakesBrakes are a critical component of every vehicle. You should always be aware of how your brakes feel and what they sound like every time you drive. If the brakes feel spongy or it takes more pressure to apply the brakes than normal they need to get inspected by a professional.

Brake sounds can indicate when maintenance or repair is needed.

Here’s a quick rundown of common brake sounds:

Squealing – It’s time for new brake pads when you hear squealing because the ones you have now are worn out and rubbing against the rotor.

Grinding – This isn’t a normal sound, but it may not be a major issue if brake grinding is happening only the first time you drive the vehicle in a day. When the humidity levels are high outside, rust can form on the brake rotors in a matter of a day if the vehicle isn’t driven. The grinding sound is the rust getting knocked off. The simple fix is to park the vehicle in a garage when it’s raining or humid.

Rattling – A rattling or vibration sound suggests one of the rotors is warped or worn out and needs to be replaced.

Intermittent sounds – If brake sounds come and go it could be an indicator of brake fade from overheating. When the brake pads, rotors or brake fluid overheat you may hear brake sounds and the brakes won’t feel as responsive. This problem should be looked at by a professional who can pinpoint the cause and fix it.

#5. Check tyres

How do you find out your tyre pressure? On newer cars, the recommended tyre pressure is most commonly listed on a sticker inside the driver’s door. If there’s no sticker on the door, you can usually find the specs in the owner’s manual. 

Overinflation of your tyres will give you a bouncy ride and an ill-handling car, while driving on underinflated tyres can cause premature wear from increased friction.

Either way, not having your tyres inflated to their recommended pressure will negatively affect tyre wear and vehicle performance – and will definitely affect your maintenance schedule when it comes to replacing them.

Check out the video below to learn how to check the conditions of your tyres.

Get help from the experts

Need your car batteries replaced? Not sure if you need to change your tyres? Then be sure to hop on over to Otopac in Menglait where experts will be on hand to assist you. Otopac is located at Unit 1-3, Tan Bee Yong Flat, Simpang 5, Jln. Gadong, Menglait I, Gadong B, Brunei Muara. (They’re located just past Jing Chew!)

Remember … if you take care of your car well, it will surely do the same for you!


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