The engine is, quite literally, the driving force of a car. Although a full engine replacement is possible, in reality when an engine fails it’s usually time to consign the entire vehicle to the scrap heap. Even before things get to that stage, an engine that’s running poorly is not efficient, which not only costs more to drive, it makes for a more frustrating and uncomfortable journey. Bearing this in mind, keeping your car’s engine in good working order as you go with proper maintenance is vital if you want to enjoy years of happy driving.
Without oil, your engine will soon collapse into a clanking, screeching mess of tortured metal before seizing up completely. Ensure your oil levels are kept high enough by checking them regularly, and don’t rely on your dashboard warning light to remind you to top up – by this time, damage may already have been done.
Over time, the quality and efficiency of your oil will start to degrade, and the oil will start to pick up dirt and debris which it will pass on to your engine parts. Prevent this by changing your oil regularly so that it stays clean and retains its lubricating power.
Finally, if you find you need to top up your oil levels more and more often, take this as a warning sign that there could be a fault somewhere causing leaks – get it checked out urgently, as a serious oil leak can cause fatal engine damage with little warning.
The Cooling System
An overheating engine is still the most common cause of a car breakdown, but it’s not just a nuisance when this happens: if your engine is regularly running too hot, its lifespan will be drastically reduced. It’s vitally important to ensure that the levels of liquid coolant in your engine’s reservoir are kept at the proper level, and that there are no leaks in the system. Also, keep an eye on the various belts, fans, and hoses which are visible within your engine compartment – if they look worn, cracked, or even overly dirty, then either replace them or have them checked out by your mechanic.
Keeping in Tune
Although having your car serviced may seem like an unnecessary expense, skipping it will be a false economy if your poorly-maintained engine suffers a catastrophic failure. Schedule regular major and interim services, during which the engine tuning will be checked and adjusted if necessary to keep it running smoothly, as well as the overall state of the engine being inspected for early signs of wear and tear.
Today’s car engines are highly engineered marvels of power and reliability – help yours to stay that way by looking after it properly!