Seasonal Maintenance for Your Car

These maintenance and safety tips will guide you through the changing of the seasons and keep you out on the road. From winter wipers to spares, you'll be covered no matter what mother nature brings.

Spring Windshield Refresher
Before you leave town for that summer road trip, think about the things you need to prepare for before driving a long distance. Your windshield is very important -- you need to keep it in top shape before you travel by car, even if it's only to the auto parts store!

Summer Auto Maintenance Checklist
Seasonal auto maintenance is important to your car. Auto maintenance should always be a priority, but as the seasons change things come up that might not have mattered last month. Besides, an auto maintenance calendar is a good thing to have in place. If your planning a road trip, all the more important.

Your Official DIY Wintertime Checklist
With winter weather on the horizon for much of the country, it's time to get your car ready for the upcoming winter wonderland. Taking half an hour to check a few key safety points on your car can save you time, money and really cold feet. Take care of these things now and avoid turning the season into a winter blunder-land.


Car Repair Shop Resources

Performing Regular Maintenance

Don't forget the maintenance! It's the little things that count, and checking a few of these little things off your list will put you ahead of the game, and ease the pain in your wallet. Most maintenance checks only take a minute, and most maintenance tasks can be tackled in an afternoon. Don't maintain your car and you'll pay the price down the road.

How to Safely Wax Your Car
If your car is more than 3 years old, you need to have a layer of wax protection to keep your paint safe. Waxing your car can add years to the life of your car's paint job and let it really shine in the meantime. Wax protects your car from all sorts of things like weather, road debris, rocks, neighborhood kids, etc. If it's time to wax your car, be sure you know how to do it right so that you don't damage your car's expensive paint finish. Buff it to a shine!

Fix Your Warm A/C: Recharge Your Air Conditioning with Freon
If your air conditioning is warm, you're mad about having warm AC. A/C is important in the summer, and you can recharge your own air conditioning by adding freon yourself. It's easy to add freon to charge your car's ac system so that you will be finished with warm air conditioning. If you use R134 instead of the older R12 refrigerant, you're in luck.

Stay On Top of Maintenance With a Regular Maintenance Schedule
Regular maintenance is vital to keeping your car out of the shop. If you keep a regular maintenance schedule and checklist you'll always stay on track and avoid costly repairs. Maintenance intervals are a good way to keep on top of things.

How To Replace a PCV Valve
If your PCV valve becomes clogged, your car's performance will suiffer. Poor idling, loss of gas mileage, slow acceleration, loss of power - all of these things can be caused by a clogged PCV valve. Replacing your PCV valve is not hard at all, and it's a repair that will make a difference in the long run.

How To Clean Your ABS Wheel Sensor
Your ABS light can be a pain in the neck. The ABS light can be triggered by a number of ABS symptoms. Before you decide to take the car in for some serious service, you might want to take a look at your ABS wheel sensors. If they are dirty, they can cause the ABS light to appear.

How To Prevent Corrosion in Electrical Connections
Corrosion can be the death of any electrical system. To prevent corrosion you need to keep your electrical connections clean and keep them that way. A corroded battery or electrical connection will mean that you are not getting a good connection to the battery, so your headlights, tail lights, brakes, air conditioning -- anything electrical can be affected.

Replace Your Fuel Filter
Your fuel filter is your engine's safety net. Auto repairs can be avoided by keeping a clean fuel filter installed. It takes no time at all to replace your fuel filter, and avoiding the expensive auto repairs that can result from dirty gas is well worth the time.

Synthetic Oil: Scam or Real Deal?
Look on the shelf of your local auto parts house and you'll see more oils than breakfast cereal choices at the supermarket. It wasn't so long ago that you had about a half dozen to pick from, and since they were all made from the same gunk, it didn't matter much anyway. Then in the early 1970s popped up a new batch of lubricants -- synthetic oils.

Do Your Own Oil Change
An oil change is the single most important auto maintenance job you can do for your car. The oil change may be basic, but without it you don't need brakes. It's easy and inexpensive to do your own oil change, and we will show you how with easy instructions and step by step photos.

Performing a Timing Belt Inspection
A visual inspection of your timing belt is always a good idea. Checking your timing belt every 10,000 miles is important, and changing your timing belt at the manufacturer's designated mileage intervals is a must. Failing to do so can result in bent valves and other expensive engine damage.

Why You Should Change Your Wipers Today
Windshield wipers go bad, and when they do you're car's safety suffers. You should replace your windshield wipers at least twice a year, and by installing new windshield wipers you'll be doing yourself and everybody else on the road a favor. Besides, it's so easy to do, you don't have to wait for an oil change or brakes to change your windshield wipers.

How to Perform a Radiator Flush
It's important to keep your car's radiator and cooling system clean. Performing a radiator flush at least once a year stops corrosion from building up in your radiator, keeping things nice and cool. This simple step-by-step car radiator flush is the key to good radiator health.

Check Your Power Steering Fluid
There's no reason to drive around with malfunctioning power steering. Got a case of the squeals when you turn the steering wheel? Pretty sure it isn't your brakes? Find out if it's a simple fix by checking your power steering fluid level. It's not just a convenience, it's a safety issue if your power steering fails.

Keep Your Brakes at Full Force
There are a few tips you need to know before you check your brake fluid or add a little to the top. Your brakes are sensitive and you could screw things up if you aren't careful. Don't skimp on the maintenance side of your brakes. We'll help make it easy.

Clean Battery Posts = Reliable Starting
If your battery posts are all cruddy, systems in your car can grind to a halt electrically. The most important function of your battery is starting the engine, but if your battery is covered with corrosion often times you can't get a good connection, and thus no start. Even with a jump start, you'll be in the same boat next time you get in the car. Cleaning your battery posts doesn't take any time at all, and the rewards can be large.

Checking and Filling Your Coolant
Don't let your car run hot because it's low on coolant. It's easy to check the coolant level in your radiator. It should be part of your regular maintenance routine and only takes a second.

Get Sparked!
Your car relies on the spark plugs to keep things running smoothly, cleanly and efficiently. Spark plugs wear out every 10,000 miles or so, and with them goes your gas mileage and engine power. Luckily, replacing them is a 15-minute job that doesn't cost much at all. Check out this simple tutorial and get to it!

Plug Wire Check!
A short in your plug wire can cause your car to run rough, affect your gas mileage adversely and even cause dangerous situations under the hood! Regular inspection of the wires will avoid this, just be sure to know what to look for.

Top Off Your Washer Fluid
Washer fluid can help keep your windshield clean in the summer and ice-free in the winter. It's easy to top it off so you know you won't run out when you really need some window juice!

Checking & Removing Your Wheel Bolts
You should check the tightness of the lug bolts on all four wheels on a regular basis. If you have had any work done on the car, be sure to double check after 10 or 20 miles. Properly checking them will make your car safe.

Inspect Your Brakes!
Brakes are pretty much the most important safety device on your car. If you've even partially lost your brakes in the past, you'll remember the change of underwear that followed. Inspecting your brakes twice a year for wear and damage can protect you and your passengers while saving you money by catching any damage before it becomes too costly.

When You Need to Add a Quart ...
Sometimes you need to top off your engine's oil. It's easy, and doesn't even have to be messy. Follow our tips and you won't make any mistakes.

Change Your Air Filter
Your car needs to breathe, and forcing the poor thing to breathe through a thick, smelly sock just isn't fair! Not to mention the effect a clogged air filter has on your gas mileage. Be sure to change your filter on a regular basis. We'll show you how to knock it out in 10 minutes.

Check Your Oil!
Checking your oil is the single most important thing you can do to extend the life of your car and keep your engine healthy. Check out these tips on how to do it safely and correctly. You'll save big money on repair bills.


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