Simple ways to extend the life of your vehicle
There is nothing quite like the feeling when you drive your new car out of the showroom – owning a shiny, perfect new vehicle certainly has its perks, so it is only natural to want to keep your vehicle in pristine condition for as long as possible. When discussing fleet vehicles it is also important to protect your investment and keep your vehicle on the road and operating at its best. While vehicles have a finite lifespan, there are some very simple things you can do to extend the life of your car.
Breaking in your vehicle
When you first pick up your new car it is important to resist the urge to drive it to its fullest extent, and be patient whilst ‘breaking your car in’ over the first 1,500km. Keeping your speed under 90km/hr (or the manufacturer’s recommended maximum break in speed) and avoiding rapid acceleration will help avoid unusual wear patterns or parts shifting within the vehicle. Read our quick guide to breaking in a new vehicle for more information. Obeying these few simple rules can avoid your vehicle developing major issues down the track and can add years to its lifespan.
To keep your car functioning at its best, only use the type of fuel recommended by your manufacturer. Using the right type of fuel for your vehicle will avoid added stress on your car’s engine. Also, if possible, avoid filling up when the tanks are being refilled at a station. The filling of a station’s underground tanks can stir up sediment which can potentially clog your fuel filters and fuel injectors, leading to poor performance.
Maintenance and cleaning
Never underestimate the importance of regularly cleaning, servicing and maintaining your vehicle. A small amount of time and money in the short term in these areas can result in massive savings later on. Get your car serviced regularly to make sure the oil is changed and tyres are rotated. Servicing also allows small problems to be fixed before they become big, expensive ones that may shorten the life of your car.
Thoroughly cleaning the interior and exterior of your car on a regular basis will also help prolong its life. Dirt particles on your vehicle’s paintwork can be abrasive, and spilled liquids like soda can be corrosive to upholstery. Using added protection for your car’s interior, like floormats to bear the brunt of wear, can be easily replaced and protect your carpet from permanent damage. Read our article on how to keep your vehicle spotless for more car care tips.
Other handy hints
Do not rapidly accelerate while your engine is warming up and for the first few minutes of your trip as this themost wear to the drive train and engine takes place in the first 10 minutes.
Make sure your keychain is light or separate your ignition key when driving. A heavy keychain puts extra stress on the parts within the ignition and can eventually lead to a failure of the ignition switch.
Park in the shade where possible to protect your car’s paintwork from the sun.
As well as extending the life of your vehicle, following these steps will also increase your car’s resale value. Keeping your vehicle properly maintained with all records in one place makes resale easy and will help secure a better price. For more information on vehicle maintenance services and reporting, click here.
While some of these tips may seem like common sense, they may in fact avoid wear and tear wreaking havoc on your vehicle. Taking proper care of your vehicle through driving habits and car care will not only make your car more pleasant to drive, but can also potentially add years to your cars life.
What other methods do you use to extend the life of your vehicle?
Let us know in the comments below.
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