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Aledo Times Record - Aledo, IL
Advice on keeping your vehicles in good condition, saving on gas and more.
Maintenance tips to keep your car running longer
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Advice from GateHouse News Service on keeping your vehicles in good condition, saving on gas and tips from national auto columnist Junior Damato. Ready your car for the seasons, get advice for your teen drivers, and get the scoop on new, concept and ...
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Advice from GateHouse News Service on keeping your vehicles in good condition, saving on gas and tips from national auto columnist Junior Damato. Ready your car for the seasons, get advice for your teen drivers, and get the scoop on new, concept and upcoming makes and models.
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FF auto care
Getting you to and from work every day and transporting your family to after-school activities and far-off destinations are just a few of the things we rely on our automobiles to do for us.
Sept. 4, 2013 5:19 p.m.



To prolong the life of your vehicle, it is important to provide the basic routine care it requires. Though automobiles are a complex system of interconnected parts, basic car maintenance doesn't have to be complicated. Here are some simple tips to keep your car running longer and more efficiently:



- Be mindful of brakes - Allowing you the very important ability to stop your vehicle, the maintenance of brakes is vital. Have them checked annually by a professional and be aware of the signs of wear including delayed response when pushing on your brake pedal, the brake light appearing on your dashboard or any high-pitched squeal or harsh grinding sounds.



- Change oil often - Oil is the lifeblood that keeps key engine components in good working condition by reducing friction and wear. Change your oil about every three months, or check your owner's manual for the manufacturer's recommended oil change intervals. This will ensure you are doing your part to maintain the frequency of oil changes your car needs. Always be sure to check for proper oil levels when preparing for any long trip you may be planning.



- Use engine treatment - To reduce wear and extend engine life, use an engine treatment. This added lubrication can keep your engine running smoother, providing greater wear protection than oil alone and extends the life of your car's engine.



- Change power steering fluid - This part of your vehicle helps you to steer with minimal effort. Be sure to have the power steering fluid changed every 50,000 miles or three years. If your fluid level is low, you may have a leak which will need to be reviewed by a mechanic.



- Replace engine coolant - In order to keep your engine running efficiently, engine coolant removes excess heat. Depending on the type you purchase, most antifreeze or engine coolants can last from 30,000 - 50,000 miles, or about three years. You can check your engine's level by locating the plastic coolant reservoir under your hood.



- Replace air filter - The air filter prevents airborne contaminants from being pulled into your car's engine. Because wear is dependent on amount of driving, regular highway drivers should have their air filters replaced about every 15,000 miles to improve fuel economy, emissions and performance.



- Maintain tire pressure - Having the right amount of pressure in your tires can prevent poor mileage, tire blowouts or uneven wear. Because a change in temperature can dramatically impact tire pressure, it is important to check tire pressure with extreme weather changes, or to be on the safe side, every couple months.



- Rotate your tires - To keep the amount of wear on tread even, minimize vibration of wheels and prolong the performance of your tires, get your tires rotated regularly. Most professionals recommend a rotation around every 4,000 miles or when you go in for oil changes.



- Family Features/Synergyn

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