For many people, their cars are a big expense on their monthly budget. While we don’t have a car loan, it still costs money to keep it on the road (though not much) and we want to keep it that way as long as we can.
When looking at buying a car, we tried to estimate the total cost of ownership, including the regular maintenance. It’s not only a matter of saving money, but also for safety. Keeping our car in tiptop gives us some peace of mind, especially with a little one.
If you too are looking at keeping your car running in great condition for longer, here are some tips that can help you do just that.
For fellow Honda Accord owners, here are some check-ups you can keep up with for your vehicle.
- Engine oil (orange loop dipstick)->Weekly or when you stop for gas. Add oil if the level is below the lower mark.
- Engine coolant -> Weekly or when you stop for gas. Check the reserve tank; don’t remove the radiator cap – the fluid is hot and may gush out.
- Windshield washer fluid (blue cap) -> Monthly. Frequent users should check each time they get gas.
- Automatic transmission fluid (yellow loop dipstick) -> Monthly
- Brake fluid (large gray cap) -> Monthly. Low brake fluid could indicate a problem. Take your Honda to a dealer for service immediately.
- Clutch fluid (small gray cap, manual transmission only) -> Monthly
- Power steering fluid (red cap) -> Monthly
- Tires -> Monthly. Check pressure. Check tread for uneven or excessive wear and foreign objects.
- Battery -> Monthly. Check condition. Check terminals for corrosion.
- Air conditioning -> Weekly. Turn it on for a short time to make sure it’s blowing cold.
- Lights ->Monthly. Check them all — head, tail, parking, and brake lights, high-mount brake light, turn signals, back up and license plate lights.
Thoughts on Maintaining Your Car
I’d love ot hear from you about your car care routine. How do you keep your car in great shape? Do you do some of the basic maintenance like oil changes yourself or do you take it to the shop for those services?