There’s a good chance that your car is an integral part of your daily life, helping you get to and from the store, work, school, and more. Keeping your car in good shape is the best way to minimize the inevitable trip to the repair shop, so what are the most common car problems and how can you prevent them?
The 5 Most Common Car Problems
1. Dashboard warning lights
As we’ve discussed previously, there are quite a lot of reasons that your dashboard warning lights come on, ranging from minor issues to critical problems. The best way to prevent an unexpected warning light is to keep your car on its maintenance schedule so it’s always in top shape.
Although some dashboard warning lights may not indicate an urgent issue, they can sometimes lead to larger problems – such as whether your car passes or fails an emissions test – so it’s always a good idea to get any dashboard warning light checked out for your peace of mind.
2. A dead battery
There’s nothing quite like the surprise of hearing your engine struggle to turn over when your battery doesn’t have enough juice to get it started. Car batteries can last anywhere from 2 – 5 years, depending on your driving habits, the temperature of where you live (batteries drain faster in very hot and very cold climates), and other factors.
You can maintain your battery life by limiting the number of short trips you take, regularly cleaning any corrosion off the battery terminals, and avoid using electronics when the car is off.
The best way to prevent a dead battery is to get a car battery tester and check the voltage levels in the battery at least twice a year to know when it’s time to get a replacement. Otherwise, if you haven’t already packed a pair of jumper cables in your car emergency kit, make sure to do so.
3. Flat tires
Flat tires are, unfortunately, one of those car problems that always seems to happen at the most inconvenient time. It’s also very difficult to completely prevent a flat tire, as there’s simply no way to know when and where there are nails or other sharp debris on the road.
However, you can go a long way towards preventing a flat tire. Regular rotations, replacing your tires when they get old, and not overfilling – or underfilling – them can help keep your tires in good shape. Check your tires at least once a month for any bulges or loose rubber that might indicate poor tire health, and replace your tires when necessary.
You can also prepare your vehicle in case you do have a flat tire on the road. Make sure your spare tire is filled properly (and, of course, in the vehicle at all!) and that you have all the tools necessary to make a repair. If you don’t want to deal with the hassle of replacing a tire on your own, you can also keep a tire repair kit on hand, although these may not work depending on how big the hole in your tire is.
Overheating is among the common car problems that can be the most dangerous for your vehicle. Your car can overheat for several reasons, including low coolant levels, problems in the water pumping system, a broken thermostat, and fan problems, to name a few. Getting your car checked regularly can help ensure that all of these components are in working order.
It’s important that you pull over as soon as possible if your car overheats, turn off the engine, and call a tow truck. If you continue to run your vehicle when it’s overheating, your engine can lock up or fail, leading to costly repairs – and potentially the need for a replacement engine.
5. Failed emissions tests
Failed emissions tests are one of the most common car problems, and it can be a frustrating problem to address since there are many reasons your car can fail an emissions test.
Like many of the other items on this list, the best way to prevent your car from failing an emissions test is to keep your vehicle on its maintenance schedule.
Comprehensive Car Care At T3 Atlanta
Whether your car needs significant repairs or routine maintenance, T3 Atlanta is your metro area solution. We offer fast and friendly service for Nissan, Infiniti, Lexus, and Toyota vehicles at both our Smyrna and Decatur locations. Give us a call and book an appointment for your car care needs today!