close up, under-the-hood view of car

The Top 5 Car Maintenance Tips

Owning a car is a privilege. The freedom to travel from Sacramento to Augusta, from the Rio Grande to Juno, and from the Canadian tundra all the way to the Southern tip of Nicaragua is a realization of the Manifest Destiny only dreamed of by our forefathers. Truly, if one was to Carpe Diem, it would be behind the wheel of their car. Taking care of that car, then, is not just an obligation to the vehicle but a responsibility to oneself. No one values their mobility like those who have a flat tire or a busted catalytic converter. That’s why we at the Tunex car repair center in South Ogden, who love to see all the sights that our state offers, from Logan to St. George, want to help our fellow Utah drivers remain roadworthy for whatever adventure calls for them.

The Basics of Car Repair

A typical car has over 10,000 moving parts. While that may seem daunting, the average driver doesn’t need to worry about each one of them (unless they prefer to handle car repairs on their own, of course). The South Ogden Tunex is happy to handle the biggest problems for you. After all, we’ve spent our careers getting to know all 10,000 of those components and what they do. It is beneficial, however, for a driver to know at least a little about the vehicle that they’re operating if only to know when to bring it in for a tune-up. Below is a list of five of the most car-care tips for drivers at any level of automobile knowledge. Each of these can be checked in your own garage, where you can make the decision to bring it to Tunex or not.

Check the Tires

When it comes to that tackling that 8,000-mile car trip from Alaska to the Southernmost part of Central America, your tires are the literal rubber that meets the road. Making sure they are in good condition is the foundation of all that we want to accomplish behind the wheel. 
  • Check the tire pressure by using a gauge that measures the PSI. If the number on the stick is equal to the manufacturer’s recommendation (as located on the sticker in the driver’s-side door, the tire is ready to drive.
  • Come to the South Ogden Tunes to have the tires rotated every 5,000-10,000 miles.
  • Use the penny trick to check the tires’ treads. If the tread is only shallow enough for the tire to go up to the crown of Lincoln’s head, it’s time to replace your tires.

Check the Fluids

For a machine that is comprised of so many metal components, all moving in symphony with one another, it may surprise people to know just how much fluids are involved in the car’s basic operations. While the drivers might use analog inputs to go faster, slow down, clean the windshield, or stop completely, the car’s many fluid reserves are what give those inputs results.
  • The oil reservoir is next to the engine and can be checked with the dipstick connected to the cap. Simply wipe it down with a rag, dip it in and pull it out again. If the oil has become sludge-like or it is below the hashmark, it is time to have it replaced. 
  • You can check the windshield wiper fluid in the clear container under the hood. If you can’t see any of the telltale blue liquid, or you’ve activated the wipers and the spray isn’t coming out, you can pour a refill directly into the reservoir. Don’t forget to use a funnel.
  • Be aware that there are also fluids for power steering, brakes, transmission, and coolant. You may want to come to our Ogden car repair shop for help in maintaining those.

Check the Lights

While it may be fun to call out oncoming paradiddles, the fact is that having any one of your lights burnt out is a danger for both you and your fellow drivers on the road. Not only does it make it hard for you to see the road clearly, but it might trick a driver into thinking that there’s a motorcycle next to them. If any lights aren’t working on the car, that is grounds for the police to issue a citation.
  • Checking lights is as easy as turning them on (including flashing the brights) and seeing if both headlights are in operation.
  • Pump the brakes to see if your brake lights are working as well. You may want to have someone behind the car to verify.

Pay Attention to the Windshield Wipers

For how important the wipers are, they can often be overlooked by drivers who don’t deal with rain on a regular basis. Windshield wipers will show that they are ready to be replaced as soon as they start leaving noticeable and distracting streaks behind, or if they neglect to push the water away altogether. Old wipers may even start to fray.
  • You can either have the mechanics at the South Ogden Tunex replace the wipers or you can buy them yourself from any store’s car repair center. 
  • There should be a book attached to the wiper bin that will have every make and model of vehicle listed from the past few decades. Simply find your car and buy the corresponding wipers listed. 
  • Installing the wipers can be tricky — remember not to force any parts to open or close, as you may snap the plastic.

Get a Car Wash

This may seem like a no-brainer but the dirty car with the words “wash me” written on the window is a cliche for a reason. Dirty cars that are never washed tend to rust faster and may even attract unwanted pests and vermin who will build nests in the undercarriage of the car. We at the South Ogden Tunex are happy to be of any service to you and any other Utah drivers. If it’s been a while since your last tune-up or your checks have found a problem, bring it in to have our team look it over. We’ll get you back on the road in no time.

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11 Jul, 2021

Preventative Maintenance

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