Car repairs can be incredibly expensive. One minor issue can snowball into a thousand-dollar fix if you are not equipped to diagnose the situation early on.
Whether you’re a novice when it comes to car repairs or someone who has had experience with automotive upkeep, you probably want to do all that you can to avoid another costly trip to the mechanic.
The good news is, regular maintenance of a vehicle can prevent you from spending hundreds of dollars on repairs, and extend your car’s lifespan. You may not feel confident in your automotive skills, but luckily, you can learn to do most routine maintenance at home with the proper tools.
One of the most useful tools you can invest in is a code reader. This device plugs into a port called an OBD connector, usually located somewhere on the driver’s side of your vehicle.
This machine will give you an error code for any potential issue on your vehicle, which is especially helpful in diagnosing problems and passing emissions.
With the right code reader, you can sometimes diagnose the problem yourself so that you don’t have to pay extra for a diagnostic fee.
While these machines can be a bit pricier, you can find a decent one for around $50. While it may sound like a lot up front, the amount of money and labor this can save you trying to figure out the problem makes it a good long-term investment.
Once you have pulled the codes off of the reader, you can look up what they mean using websites like MyCheckEngineLight.Com.
A float switch, also known as a liquid level sensor, is a device used when testing the levels of fluids in your vehicle. This tool can be used to test a number of fluids, such as fuel, oil, coolant, or transmission.
Knowing the fluid levels in your vehicle is important, as a well-lubricated engine is essential to the proper upkeep and maintenance of your car.
This will not only act to alert you when your fluid levels are low, but a float switch can also let you know when your fluids may be too high, which can be a problem when you are talking about fluids such as oil.
There are a number of fluids you should be checking in your vehicle regularly, so putting $150 towards a float switch will save you grief in the long run.
Tire Pressure Gauge:
Tires perform an essential function in the operation of your vehicle. Therefore, knowing how to correctly use and read a tire pressure gauge is important before taking your car on the road.
A tire pressure gauge connects to the valve stem of a tire, the area where you would normally connect for air.
A common occurrence when filling tires with air is that the tire may be overfilled, which can present just as many dangers on the road and affect overall alignment.
While the conventional pen-sized gauge is relatively inexpensive (around $6 or $7,) you can opt to invest in a digital pressure gauge as well.
The process to use these devices is relatively the same, but the digital gauge may be simpler for a new user.
Many of us aren’t mechanics. It is impossible to expect someone to learn the inner workings of an automobile overnight, but with proper research, patience, and the right investments, you can be equipped with the right tools to give your car the proper upkeep.
While these tools don’t guarantee that you can fix an existing problem in your car, the regular practice of these devices can save you time, money, and energy.