How to take care of a used car
It doesn’t matter if you’re heading on the school run, or just popping down to the shops, we don’t think twice about jumping in a car and expecting it to ‘just work’.
With any car, there’s a long list of things that couldgo wrong. However, it’s always wise to exercise a little extra caution when driving a used car.
Given that used cars will have experienced more wear and tear than a brand new model, as well as clocking up a fair few miles on the road, it’s only natural that they’ll need a bit of maintenance every now and then.
To help keep your second-hand motor in tip-top shape, we’ve put together our list of essential car maintenance advice.
A regular vehicle service
A car service will alert you to any potential issues as soon as possible, and if necessary, you should seek the help of a professional mechanic to address these problems.
One simple way to get vital vehicle information, such as common break down causes, potential MOT faults, and a car’s full history, is with a vehicle check. Our comprehensive vehicle history check allows you to access essential data without setting foot in a dealership or garage, with a wealth of information just a click away.
How often should you service your car?
This really depends on how often and how far you drive, but a good rule of thumb is to take your vehicle for a car service every 12 months or every 12,000 miles. If you drive far and often, we recommend taking your car for a temporary car service every six months or 6,000 miles.
How much does a car service cost?
A basic car service in the UK costs around £125, depending on the company’s price plan and any promotional offers. A full-service will cost you more.
Take care of your tyres
Another important aspect of car care is, of course, your tyres – the very things that connect your vehicle to the road. Despite their importance, many people often forget to maintain and check their functional aspects.
Factors such as tyre pressure and tyre alignment play an important part in the performance of your vehicle, as well as affecting the lifespan of the tyres themselves. So, the regular checking of pressure, alignment and tyre treads are definitely advised on cars both old and new. Of course, if and when you do need new tyres, it’s worth checking out our very own tyre service.
Keep your interior tidy
Keeping on top of your vehicle’s cleaning and upkeep can actually increase its longevity. Not only that, it can really boost the value of the car in the eyes of any potential buyers further down the line. So, it’s always strongly recommended that you give your interior a regular sprucing and a bit of TLC. That can be tender loving care, or a thoroughly long clean, just take your pick.
What’s more, an untidy interior can lead to a whole host of other problems too. As well as potentially affecting your health, too much dirt, dust and grime can wear away at interior fittings and clog up essential electronics, while dirty windows and mirrors can impair the driver’s field of vision resulting in dangerous driving conditions.
Don’t forget to change your fluids
Finally, let’s talk fluids.
Important fluids (such as radiator fluid, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, washer fluid, and air conditioning coolant) all play an important part in the performance of your vehicle.
From helping to keep things lubricated to ensuring your car is running smoothly, regularly checking and replacing fluids helps the efficiency and general condition of your car.
For more Green Flag top tips and trustworthy advice concerning used cars, check out our blog page. If you’re in the process of purchasing or testing a used car, don’t forget that all-important vehicle history check before you hand over your cash.