DIY Car Maintenance Tips

Whether lockdowns have hit your back pocket or you simply have some extra time on your hands, it has provided an opportunity for Sydneysiders to do some of the much needed maintenance jobs around the house. Auto repair is no exception.

Not only can it help pass the time, doing maintenance on your vehicle could save you money in the long run.

While much of the technical mechanical work will need expert attention, here are handy and affordable car maintenance tips anyone can do – even if you aren’t mechanically minded.

Starting easy with air filters

In order to keep your car running at its peak, experts suggest you change your air filter every 12 months or 10,000 to 15,000kms, whichever comes first. It may sound daunting, but air filters can be changed in just a few moments and with only three steps. To do so:

  1. Lift the hood of your car and find the filter. It is a black rectangular box with metal clips on the side.
  2. Open up the casting, remove the old air filter and use a rag to clean the air box.
  3. Place your new filter into the housing, ensuring it is aligned on both sides. Replace the lid and replace the fasteners. Close the bonnet.

Don’t forget about changing the oil

Every vehicle needs an oil change regularly. In fact, one of the first things mechanics often tell consumers after checking their car is they need an oil change and a tune up.

With modern makes, the need for oil changes differs but it is generally recommended every 10,000 to 20,000kms.

Safety remains paramount when changing oil. It is vital that the car’s engine is cool before changing. Also be aware this is potentially one of the dirtier jobs you could be doing on your car.

To change your car’s oil:

  1. Get under your car and locate the vehicle’s oil pan.
  2. Unscrew the drain plug and drain all of the old oil into your oil pan.
  3. Once all of the oil is drained, replace the drain plug.
  4. Go back to your engine and remove the old oil filter with your oil filter wrench. (This could get messy as there could be left over oil)
  5. Lubricate the rubber gasket on the new oil filter with some new motor oil.
  6. Fill the new oil filter about two-thirds of the way with new oil.
  7. Screw in the new oil filter. Hand-tighten it only.
  8. Fill the engine with new oil using your funnel.
  9. With a dip-stick, double check your oil level to be sure you’ve added enough.
  10. Discard the old oil filter and recycle the old oil.

Maintain your car’s battery

Ever been caught in the middle of nowhere with a car that won’t start? Chances are, your battery is flat.

Battery maintenance is one of the key ways to keep your car running well. To maintain your battery:

  1. Remove your battery terminals. Make sure you always remove the negative cable first. If your battery terminals are stuck, use a flathead screwdriver to pry them loose.
  2. Clean the posts.
  3. Rinse the cleaning fluid with a little water.
  4. Dry the posts with rags.
  5. Replace battery terminals.

Scratches and dents

While the previous three tips will keep you going throughout lockdowns, if you’ve got a car paint scratch or dent we suggest you put your DIY tools down.

Painting is one of those jobs where it’s best to call the professionals and Bumpertek’s contact-free service is the ideal choice during the current Sydney lockdowns. For all your car scratch repair needs, contact Bumpertek for a free, no-obligation assessment.