13 Car Care Resolutions for 2013

It’s that time of year where New Year’s resolutions are in full gear. You have promised yourself to make it to the gym more often, try harder to get that new job, or take more time out to do the things that you enjoy.

 “All your resolutions have one common denominator — you must drive to get there. You have to drive to the gym, drive to your interview and drive to visit the vineyard that’s been on your bucket list,” says Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council.

 So why not resolve to take better care of your car and drive smarter? All your resolutions depend on it! Here are 13 tips provided by the Car Care Council for 2013 that will help with your resolutions:

  1. Get regular oil changes since they are your best investment toward the longevity of the engine.
  2. Get regular brake inspections which are the best way to ensure safe and reliable breaking and minimize the cost of repairs when break service is needed.
  3. Make sure your gas cap is secure and tight. A loose gas cap can trigger the “Check Engine” or “service Engine Soon” light.
  4. Ensure your tires are properly inflated. Proper tire inflation can improve gas mileage by more than 3 percent when maintained regularly.
  5. Get regular alignment checks — they are your best way to maximize tire life and ensure that your car performs on the road as originally designed.
  6. Get routine tune-ups and engine performance checks — they can be your best assurance of good performance and fuel economy. A healthy running engine maximizes the life of expensive emission system components.
  7. Frequent washing and polishing is the best way to protect your car’s finish from the damaging effects of acid rain.
  8. You should check the condition of the coolant each spring and fall to make sure the additives that protect against corrosion still function.
  9. Have any suspicions of a leak checked out at once. Carbon monoxide from your car’s exhaust is odorless, colorless-and lethal.
  10. Try to replace your car’s fuel filter every two years or 24,000 miles for best results.
  11. During normal driving, you may not notice a light that isn’t working; inspect your car’s lights at every oil change.
  12. You should test your battery every fall. If your car’s battery is three years old or more, consider replacing it since the chances of failure increase.
  13. Improper ride height of your car can impact alignment angles and cause premature wear of some steering and suspension parts.

The Car Care Council is the source of information for the “Be Car Care Aware” consumer education campaign promoting the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair to consumers. For a copy of the council’s Car Care Guide or for more information, visit www.carcare.org.