A modern car should last at least 200,000 miles – or twelve years – if you look after it.
And there are things you can do to give your car the best chance of having a long life.
Now, we’re not saying a little TLC will mean your car racks up 3,039,122 miles like Guinness World Record Holder Irvin Gordon with his 1966 Volvo car.
But by being proactive with car maintenance, you could easily increase your car’s longevity well over 200,000 miles or twelve years.
Here are five powerful tips to make your car last longer.
1. Check your tyres regularly.
Your car tyres are essential and to extend the life of your car, you should check your tyres regularly.
Underinflated car tyres increase fuel consumption and put you and other Northern Ireland drivers at risk.
Make sure you know the correct pressure for your tyres, which you can usually find in the manufacturer’s handbook, on a sticker on the car door or a label on the fuel tank door.
Check tyre tread depth regularly too; Northern Ireland law states that there “must be at least the legal minimum 1.6 mm of tread and preferably more than 2 mm.”
2. Change oil and air filters regularly.
Changing your car’s air filters regularly provides a host of benefits, including increasing your engine’s life, improving your car’s driveability, reducing emissions, and increasing fuel efficiency.
And regularly changing your oil filters could save you a lot of money and prolong the life of your car.
You should replace your oil filter every 6-7,000 miles if your car uses petrol and every 9-10,000 miles if you drive a diesel car.
3. Look after your car battery.
If you want your car to enjoy a long life, then prioritise looking after your battery.
Car batteries usually last around three years, but if you don’t drive your car regularly, it could degrade a lot more quickly.
To avoid shortening your battery’s life, drive your car for longer journeys now and then, and protect it from Northern Ireland’s harsh winters by parking it in your garage if you have one.
4. Top up fluids regularly
Always keep on top of fluid levels in your car; engine oil, coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid, clutch fluid, and windscreen wash.
Check your engine oil at least every four weeks (more often if you have the time).
Keep an eye on your car’s dashboard for any warning signs that fluid levels are running low.
Every time you get your car serviced, ask them to check and top up all fluid levels if necessary.
5. Drive with ‘mechanical sympathy’.
Driving with mechanical sympathy means understanding your car and how to operate it best using the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Avoid harsh braking or acceleration, and don’t rest your foot on the clutch.
Try and use all controls smoothly (brakes, accelerator, gearbox, etc.) to reduce wear and tear.
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