Thirty-six percent of American car owners don’t know how to fix a flat tire, and nearly half of them are not confident in their ability to change their car’s oil, according to a survey conducted by Cooper Tires. Even checking tire pressure using an air pressure gauge can prove to be too advanced a task for one in five American car owners, the study also found. While it is not necessary to know how to fix car problems, having this type of knowledge can help you save a lot of money on mechanic costs and keep your car in tip top condition. For preppers, knowing how to do basic car repairs is even more important since locating a mechanic to fix your car may prove to be an impossible task. Luckily, there are various car repair and maintenance projects that are easy to master even for novices.
Changing your oil and oil filter
Oil to your car’s engine is like blood to your body. It serves as a lubricant, preventing key engine components from grinding against each other and destroying your engine. You need to check and change your vehicle’s oil regularly to ensure smooth running and to prolong the lifespan of your engine. To do it, you first need to remove the oil drain plug to drain the oil. Proceed to unscrew the oil filter and empty it before putting your drain plug and oil filter back. Lastly, remove the oil filler hole cap, pour in your fresh oil, and enjoy the sound of a happy engine.
Changing a flat tire
Your tires need to be properly inflated at all times to do their job properly, as well as to reduce the chances of a blowout. Unfortunately, a flat tire can happen when you least expect it and force you to stop, sometimes in the middle of nowhere. Luckily, changing a flat tire is an easy task that you can do on your own with just a wrench and car jack. To do it, you first need to loosen the lug nuts on the flat tire and lift your car off the ground using a jack for easier access. You need to ensure that you have a suitable jack for your car or else it the task is impossible. With the car off the ground, proceed to remove the lug nuts and subsequently the flat tire. Finally, place the spare tire on, wrench the lug nuts back on tightly, lower your car, and drive off.
Replacing windshield wipers
Wipers are one of the least appreciated components of your car’s safety system. If they failed during heavy rains or snow, driving your car would be extremely dangerous due to visibility issues. Faulty wipers must be replaced, and you need to be sure that your wipers are in perfect shape always. To fix a faulty wiper, lift its arm away from the windshield and pull off the faulty wiper blade. Line up your new wiper blade with the arm and push it in tightly.
You don’t need to be a mechanic to know how to take care of your vehicle and fix many of the issues that commonly affect cars. By learning how to do maintenance and repairs yourself, it will be much cheaper and less time consuming to take care of your car, and you will possess skills that could even save your life one day.