5 basic Car repairs you NEED to know
For those of us that are drivers, it’s hard to actually imagine how you’d go about your daily routine without a car. For that reason, you really need to make sure you know some basic maintenance.
Obviously, if something goes horribly wrong and you’re no mechanic, then get an expert in. But for smaller jobs that you could probably easily get done yourself, it’s not worth the aggro if you can help it.
Save yourself a few pennies, and make sure that you keep on top of yourself in terms of your car. Here’s 5 basic repairs to get you started on what you need to know.
Car Batteries and Jump-starting
It happens when you’re least expecting it. On the road, it’s going to be more convenient to call assistance, but if you think it’s packing in when on the drive then you can easily replace it yourself.
Remove any covers from the battery, disconnect the negative cables, move the clamp away from the battery post, do the same for the positive cable clamp, removing all screws. Now replace the old battery with the new one, and finally reconnect the cable clamps. Done! Just make sure you label the cables before you remove them or you’ll struggle.
On the subject of batteries, it’s worth knowing how to jump-start your car if it won’t get going. First off, make sure you ALWAYS have jumper cables in your car. All you need to do is flag down another vehicle to help, make sure both vehicles are in neutral and the the ignition is off on both. Red clips go to the positive terminals of both cars, where one black goes to the negative in the other car while the other goes to an unpainted metal surface. All you need to do then is start your vehicle.
Replacing Flat Tires
It’s important to keep your tires inflated, you don’t want them going flat on you. If it keeps going flat regularly, you’ll probably need to change the tire to a new one. It’s not as difficult as it sounds, all you need is a wrench and a jack stand.
Using the jackstand lift the car off the ground, and make sure it’s solid so it doesn’t fall on your feet (that would really suck). Now all you need to do is use the wrench to loosen the lug nuts so you can get the tire off. Now just replace it with a new one and make sure you tighten the lug nuts back in with the new tire. Seriously though, make sure it’s super tight. You don’t want the new tire flying off mid journey.
You should regularly check the oil in your car, and replace it for smoother running of the vehicle and to keep your engine working for as long as possible. It’s usually a very simple task, and you will probably get shown how to do it in your early days of driving. That’s unless it’s hard to reach of course.
It’s just a simple case of draining the oil out with the drain cap, then putting it back in and filling up with more oil through the oil filler hole. If you’re struggling, it’s probably best to enter your car model in on YouTube and somebody will have already cracked it so you can follow their lead.
Replacing Headlights & Taillights
If a light goes out on your car, get it sorted as quick as possible as it is ILLEGAL to be driving with a broken headlight or taillight. It can vary from car to car, but there’s a general gist to it so you won’t be needing to dash to kwik-fit if you’re feeling confident enough.
Remove any screws that are connecting the headlight frame to the bracket and disconnect any electrical connectors. Replace your faulty bulb and then have everything connected back up and screw the headlight frame back in place to the bracket. Sorted! Remember to check it works before you drive off though.
Changing Brake Pads
It’s super important to have perfectly working brake pads. A lot of accidents are down to failing brakes, and nobody needs that to worry about. It’s only as difficult as it would be to change your tires, since you need to remove them in the process anyway.
Get your jackstand to keep your car up and remove the tire with the break pad you want replacing. Remove the slider bolts and take off the old break pads. Replace them with the new ones, and put everything back securely in place. You should take care when using replica wheels – if you’re struggling then see if anybody with experience can give you a hand before going to a garage. We’re trying to save you money here afterall!
Hopefully these tips have come as some use to you. If you want to know any more simple car repairs that you feel you should know, give us a shout!
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