Get back on the road — carefully

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Car repair and maintenance can put a strain on both a senior’s budget and back. With some smart and simple preventive care, you can reduce automotive troubles down the line. (StatePoint)

The snow is finally melting and it may be time to shake off the cabin fever with a road trip — maybe to a shopping or entertainment destination or maybe to check on the cabin.
But first, take time to make some preparations to ensure you make your destination safely.

Check tread and tire pressure

The last thing any senior needs is a blown-out tire while driving. Avoid this dangerous scenario by checking the tread on your tires and the air pressure once a month.

Tires with little or no tread and those showing threads are unsafe and should be replaced immediately.

For the recommended air pressure for your tires, do not go by the numbers on the sidewall of the tires. Instead, refer to the owner’s manual or sticker on the driver’s side door — which shows you the pressure the car’s systems were built for.

Not only does proper air pressure decrease the likelihood of a blowout, but it increases your car’s gas mileage, and gives your vehicle better traction.

Change the oil

The truth is that oil changes take time and money. However, if this task is not done routinely, then the overall health of your engine can be jeopardized.

When using conventional oil, it’s recommended to change the oil every 3,000 miles. However, new synthetics are specifically designed to minimize wear and tear and restore performance in engines with more than 75,000 miles.

Instead of the typical oil change once every 3,000 miles, synthetic oil can reduce the frequency to once every 10,000 to 15,000 miles, or once every 12 months, depending on how much your vehicle is used.

At www.RoyalPurpleConsumer.com, one synthetic manufacturer offers information on the benefits to your car and your wallet.

Check your lights

Don’t get left in the dark — or get rearended because your vehicle’s brake lights aren’t working.

Regularly check headlights, taillights, turning signals and brake lights. Thousands of accidents a year are the direct result of failed lights.

Check your lights by asking a neighbor, friend or family member to walk around your car as you turn the headlights, taillights and turning signals off and on.

Also, apply light pressure to the brake to make sure your brake lights are working as well. If a light is out, check the fuses. An easy do-it-yourself replacement can save you time and money.

You don’t have to be a professional mechanic or overextend your budget to increase the lifetime of your car. Some simple proactive and regular care will go a long way in keeping you and your car together, far down the road.

— StatePoint Media

 

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