It’s always important to keep up with regular car maintenance so that your car is running safely and smoothly. That said, sometimes car issues can be a bit financially draining to take care of. Because of that, sometimes people put up with their car problems because they think the repairs are going to cost too much. However, there are 6 common car problems that you can either fix completely on your own or that cost next to nothing to get done professionally that you should know about if you own a car.
1. Car Key Issue
In a lot of cases, people aren’t sure what to do when they lose their car key, or it breaks, thinking that they need to replace the entire lock, or they’ll have to have their car towed. However, the fix is pretty simple – get a replacement car key delivered to you. There are professional locksmiths that will come over to wherever you are, some will even give you a free estimate, and then they will work on getting you a new key or fixing the issue in another way so that you can get back onto the road as soon as possible. The best part is that it won’t cost you an arm and a leg, so if you’re ever in this situation, don’t panic! If your key is stuck in the lock but didn’t break, due to it being cold out, you can try a few things at home to get it unstuck. For starters, try heating up the key with a lighter and then try to wiggle it out. If that doesn’t work, you can also try using some WD-40 or penetrating oil on the keyhole to help it slide out easier. When doing this, it’s important that you don’t tug on the key too much so that you don’t break it, since that kind of material tends to get a bit brittle in lower temperatures.
2. Transmission Problems
There are a few different ways to fix your transmission if it’s acting up, and the first thing you should try is checking what kind of liquids you have in your car. If you have an automatic transmission, make sure there is some form of fluid in the reservoir because if there isn’t any, that means that air got into the lines, and you’ll need to get it replaced, and the fluid topped off. For a manual transmission, make sure there’s enough gear oil in there – if not, add some until you reach the full line on your dipstick. If that doesn’t work, then try buying an electronic control unit for your car that can override whatever is wrong with your vehicle and give you the ability to drive it until you can get it fixed. These units are relatively cheap and easy to install, so they’re definitely worth trying if your car isn’t shifting gears properly.
3. Air Conditioning Problems
If your air conditioner is broken or not blowing cold air as it should be, there are a few things that you can do to try and fix it. A lot of the time, if the AC is running, but the temperature in the car stays the same, all you need to do is change the air filters, and you’ll be good to go. The way to do this is usually pretty self-explanatory, but if you’re not sure where your filters are or how to get to them, most car manuals will have pictures and instructions on how to do this. If the problem is a bit more serious than that, then you might need to add some refrigerant to the system. This is something that you can usually do yourself. If the air is only warm coming out, make sure your car isn’t in direct sunlight because if it’s hot outside, sitting in the sun for too long will make the inside of your car extremely hot.
4. Chipped Paint
This issue is pretty common when dealing with paint issues on your car. If your car has a lot of chips in it, and you want to get rid of them without having to repaint the entire thing, all you need to do is get a touch-up kit from a dealer or an auto parts store and follow the instructions exactly. If the chips are in a hard-to-reach place, you might be able to get away with using some touch-up paint that you put over the chip itself – just make sure that it’s the kind of paint that can withstand outdoor conditions. If there’s a bit of rust where the paint has chipped, it’s always a good idea to go over it with a wire brush and some rust remover before painting it. And as with anything else you paint, if you’re applying multiple coats of paint, it’s important to let each one dry completely before applying the next one.
5. Dead Battery
If your car battery is dead, the first thing you should do is try to see if it’s just a problem with the terminals. To do this, all you need to do is unscrew the terminals (or remove the connector) and then clean them off with a wire brush. Make sure that there’s no corrosion on them and that they’re clean of dirt, grime, or anything else that might have built up on them. If it’s just the terminals that are the problem, you can usually buy replacement terminals for pretty cheap at an auto parts store. However, if the battery is drained because you haven’t used your car in a while, you might be good with just some jumper cables and a friend with a working battery.
6. Windshield Wipers
If your windshield wipers aren’t working, the first thing you should do is check the fuse. To do this, all you need to do is take out the fuse box and look for the fuse that corresponds with the windshield wipers. If it’s blown, just replace it with a new one, and you should be good to go. If one of them is broken, replacing them is probably one of the easiest things you can do on this list. All you need to do is get a new windshield wiper blade and pop it onto the arm of the windshield wipers. It’s always a good idea to keep an extra set of windshield wipers in your car, just in case something happens to them, especially since they’re really cheap.
Getting your car fixed at the mechanic might be a really good idea for some issues, but there are 6 that are pretty easy to fix yourself. This is definitely something you should try if you’re on a budget or just don’t want to go get it fixed. If any of these sound familiar, follow the instructions and see if they do the trick. If they don’t, or if you’re not sure how to do them, it’s always a good idea to go get all of these issues fixed at your local dealership or auto parts store.
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