DIY Car Maintenance Tips For Trouble-free Motoring


DIY is a well-established method of saving costs, and when it comes to trouble-free motoring, there are many DIY tasks that even a non-techy person can perform without calling in professionals.

Changing Spark Plugs

Changing your engine spark plugs is quite a simple process but it requires some tools and a bit more patience because it has to be done in a particular order. Locating the plugs is quite easy. They are attached to thick cables which are not difficult to trace. The plugs should be replaced one at a time using the spark plug socket and extension on the ratchet to remove the plugs. The replacement plug should be installed by manually screwing it into position and then tightening it with a wrench so that it fits snugly.

Changing the Engine Oil and the Oil Filter

This process could take about half an hour or more and would require a tool set which includes a ratchet and wrench. You will also need to jack up your car to enable you get underneath the car to locate your car’s oil pan. The drain plug should be unscrewed to drain the oil into the oil pan. When the engine is completely drained, the drain plug should be replaced. Remove the old oil filter with the wrench and lubricate the rubber gasket on the new filter with some clean oil before putting it in place. With the aid of a funnel, fill the engine with the new oil and check the oil level with a dip stick to ensure that sufficient oil has been added.

Battery Maintenance and Radiator Flushing

White residue on the battery posts can prevent the car from starting. Regular visual checks will tell when the posts need to be cleaned. Remove the battery terminals (negative cable first) with a flat head screwdriver and generously apply a professional cleaning fluid to the posts. Vigorously clean them with a wire brush and rinse with some water. Dry the posts with a rag before replacing the battery terminals. Flushing the radiator at intervals is an effective way of getting rid of built-up deposits that can disrupt the car’s cooling system but it is a more advanced DIY exercise because it requires working with a coolant.

Changing the Air and Fuel Filters

You can replace your car air filter at home and it can be done within ten minutes without any tools. Check the manual of your car to find the exact location of the filter. Raise the hood of the car and open up the filter casing. Make a note of the way the filter sits within the casing so that you can insert the new filter exactly the same way when you have removed the old one. Replacing the fuel filter is a more advanced DIY exercise because it requires paying attention to every detail. It may be advisable to allow a professional to handle this one if you are not conversant with the procedure.

Replacing Windscreen Wipers and Brake pads

Another task you can perform on your own without special tools is replacing your windscreen wipers. Wiper blade set-up can vary from one car to another so it is advisable to follow the steps as outlined in the owner’s manual. Besides, new blade packages often have a set of instructions and helpful diagrams to help in replacing old windscreen wipers. Although replacing brake pads is DIY-eligible, safety is top priority here, and it may be wise get professional help if you are at all uncomfortable undertaking this process as DIY.

Wheel Alignment

Bad wheel alignment can cause your car tyres to wear unevenly and prematurely too. Apart from the cost of replacing the tyres when they wear out too quickly, your car engine has to work harder to propel the vehicle forward and this causes the engine to consume more fuel. Unfortunately it is not advisable to attempt aligning your car wheels at home because specialist equipment is required. In order to avoid uneven tyre wear, it is better to employ the services of professionals such as Imperial Tyres to undertake your wheel alignment.