Save Time and Money with Easy DIY Car Maintenance

September 26th, 2016 by


Car maintenance can be a pain. Being without a car for a few hours while you wait for maintenance can be a hassle and no one likes paying for the labor or the price markup on parts. So, why not try to maintenance your Chrysler yourself? Some of the routine car maintenance that we pay mechanics are super fun DIY projects that can be done after work or on the weekend!

Tasks like replacing your windshield wipers, a radiator flush and adding coolant to your car, changing your oil and air filter, are all tasks that almost all drivers can do at home. Read below to get started.

The top five DIY car maintenance tasks are: windshield wiper replacement, low air in tires, radiator flush, brake pads, and air filter replacement.

Replacing Your Windshield Wipers

Equipment: New windshield wipers

New windshield wipers can make a big difference to how clearly you see the road when it is raining or snowing and replacing your vehicle’s old windshield wipers with new ones is really easy. Additionally, it makes a lot more sense to buy the wipers and put them on yourself rather than buy the wipers and pay a service tech to do it for you.

All it takes is ordering the correct wipers for your car, and installing them yourself. If you can’t figure it out by looking at your wipers, search some “How To” videos on YouTube. It’s usually very simple.

Checking and Properly Inflating Your Car Tires

Equipment: Tire Gauge and maybe the air pump at a gas station if air is needed

Driving around with low or incorrect tire pressure can cause an uncomfortable ride and actually cost you a lot of money in repairs. If the tire pressure is too high, the whole tread section of the tire may not touch the road, which leads to an uncomfortable ride and potentially cause traction issues which can be dangerous.

The good news is, that it is extremely cheap to make sure you are driving around with the proper tire pressure and to fill up your car’s tires if necessary. Even if the “check tire pressure” light isn’t on, you should check your tire pressure at least once a month, especially when the weather temperatures are extreme highs or lows.

So if you want to check your tires yourself you need a tire gauge. A tire gauge is helpful to have in your car, but many people just use the one that is on the air machines at gas stations.  

You also need to know what the proper tire pressure is for your wheels. If your car has the same tires that the manufacturer uses, you can check the proper tire pressure on the sticker on your car door. However, if the tires on your car are different than the factory tires, you can look on the tire near the rim and the recommended tire pressure should be there.

So once, you have a gauge and know the recommended pressure, remove the air cap and push the gauge onto the valve stem. The gauge will push a stick out to the level your pressure is. If you tires are below that number, you need to add enough air to the recommended pressure and then put the cap back on. Check all four tires and then you are done. That’s it. Repeat in a month.

Air filter replacement

It is typically recommended that your car’s air filter be replaced every 12,000 miles, so typically once a year.  A car’s air filter helps protect your car’s engine because it cleans the air entering the engine and also filters out debris that could cause problems.

Having a clean air filter helps your car run efficiently and therefore it improves fuel economy, your car accelerates better and emits fewer emissions, and increases your car’s engine life. Dirty air filters make it harder for the engine to properly run and can affect the efficiency and operation of other car parts.

Thankfully, you can replace your air filter for super cheap and in just 10-15 minutes.

  1. First you will need to order or buy a new air filter (check your car’s manual for the specs).
  2. Then once you  have it, pop the hood and find where the air filter is in your car (again, check the manual if you can’t find it).
  3. Before removing the old one, look how the filter fits into the filter compartment and which way it faces. Then remove the old filter and replace with the new one and re-fasten the metal clips. Done.  

Car Wash

Washing your own car is such an easy way to keep your car looking good and to save some money. Car washes at gas stations are definitely convenient but they range from $5 to $10 and if you do it once a month that’s $60 to $120 per year!

Washing your own car is simple, but there are a couple things you should keep in mind when you wash your car.

  1. Don’t let the soap dry as you are washing, if it is drying too fast, wash your car in sections so you can rinse the soap off before it dries.
  2. Be conscious of what’s on your sponge. You want to frequently wash it off to ensure that there is no debris on it that would scratch or damage your paint. Also, Don’t clean the tires and the body with the same sponge. The tires have more debris, grease and heavy dirt, so that can get on the body of your car.
  3. Use the right sponge and soap. Car soap isn’t expensive and it is specially made to keep your car looking clean.

Need parts?

Hollywood Chrysler Jeep has an excellent parts department. We can help you find and get anything you need.

Still not up for the DIY maintenance?

Come by Hollywood Chrysler Jeep, our service technicians are skilled and take excellent care of all cars. We don’t just service Chrysler and Jeep models, we accept all car models. Check out our service department.

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