Auto-fall maintenance will give you peace of mind – WHEELS.ca
If I could share one tip with motorists as the cold weather approaches, it would be to not skimp on car maintenance.
This message may sound familiar, but too many motorists regard car maintenance as an afterthought. They get frustrated when their vehicle breaks down due to neglect, and later when their vehicle – as a trade-in – is worth less than they imagined it would be.
It’s a fact that well-maintained vehicles perform more efficiently, more reliably, and have higher trade-in values ââthan poorly maintained vehicles.
Auto maintenance is even more important today, as Canadians keep their cars longer (11.6 years on average) and drive more kilometers.
The first step in preparing your vehicle for fall is to read your owner’s manual. It sounds like a tedious exercise, but the information in the manual will help keep your vehicle running smoothly and save you money on future repairs.
Follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule. If your vehicle needs scheduled maintenance, don’t put it off.
Longer service intervals have given many motorists the impression that vehicles require less maintenance. Not true. Regular and scheduled maintenance should always be a priority. Since manufacturers recommend longer service intervals, it is imperative that automotive service be performed on time to avoid reliability issues.
Longer service intervals may be more convenient for car owners, but the frequency of visits also depends on the number of kilometers driven, driving habits and outside temperatures.
Longer maintenance intervals do not mean ignoring the maintenance items that are mandated by law. Failure to meet vehicle emission standards, poor tire tread, and inoperative brake and / or signal lights can result in fines or vehicle seizure. The two most important things you can never compromise on are the tires and the brakes.
Don’t put yourself and your family at risk. Make sure you have the right tires in cold weather. All-season tires are not suitable for all driving and weather conditions. Unlike winter tires, all-season tires lack cold weather compounds, treads, and tread patterns for traction in deep snow and ice.
When purchasing new tires, all four should be replaced at the same time. All tires require constant linear (forward) and lateral (lateral) traction to prevent loss of control.
Most new car dealers sell and install most brand name tires for all types of vehicles, and many dealerships also offer tire storage.
Also read: Best winter tires for 2017
The wiper blades should be checked and, if necessary, replaced. If a wiper blade breaks while driving during a rain / snowstorm, it could endanger your visibility and lead to a collision.
To better prepare for driving in the fall, include safety items in your trunk: an ice scraper, blanket, flashlight, first aid kit, duct tape, battery jumper cables, energy bars and a small shovel.
For any auto service need, visit your local new car dealership. A qualified automotive technician will examine your car’s mechanical and electrical systems and report any repairs or issues required. If you have any questions regarding the maintenance of your vehicle, contact a technical advisor.
Service advisors can identify areas of concern, such as brake wear, cooling system malfunctions, excessive tire wear, and transmission issues. If a service advisor alerts you of a potential problem, make the repairs now, instead of waiting for an outage when you least expect it.
Motorists often wait for the first snowfall before wintering their vehicle. This is a mistake, as service departments are overwhelmed during these times. Plan to winterize your vehicle now, before the snow blows away – you’ll be glad you did.
Also Read: Stay Safe With These Defensive Winter Driving Tips
This column represents the views and values ââof the TADA. Write to [email protected] or go to tada.ca. Larry Lantz is President of the Trillium Automobile Dealers Association and a new car dealership in Hanover, Ontario.
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