It often seems like everyone has a different opinion about how you should care for your car. Although all of these tips are meant to help preserve the lifespan of your vehicle and save you money, some of them actually aren’t all that helpful for your vehicle. Today, we talk about 5 common car maintenance myths that you can safely leave in the past.
1. Premium fuel is better for your car and its gas mileage
The reasoning behind this myth is that there are fewer impurities in premium gas, so your car can run cleaner and more efficiently with a tank full of the expensive stuff.
As we discuss in the difference between fuel grades, premium gas is worth every penny for cars that are designed for this type of fuel. However, your average engine doesn’t need the higher octane because it isn’t designed to burn premium fuel efficiently. Average engines are actually designed to perform their best with lower-grade gas.
It won’t hurt your vehicle to put premium fuel in an engine that’s designed for low or mid-grade gas, but it also won’t impact your gas mileage or performance. If you have a car where premium fuel is required, DO NOT put lower grade gasoline into it. You may save some money now, but you could shorten the lifespan of your car and see a lower miles per gallon with long-term use.
2. You can wash your car with dish or laundry soap
The train of thinking here is that you already have all the tools you need on hand to wash your car – assuming you have dish or laundry soap, of course. You save yourself cash and a trip to the auto supply store, all while getting the same results as a specially-formulated car washing solution, right?
Not quite. Dish or laundry soap may be effective at cleaning dirt and grime off of your vehicle, but that’s all it can do. Car wash solutions are designed to do more than make your car shiny; these formulas remove dirt and grime that can eat away at your paint job, protect the paint, and improve visibility while it’s raining with a thin layer of wax.
3. Rolling down the windows while driving will improve fuel economy
Whether your car’s air conditioning wastes gas actually depends on where you’re driving.
If you’re driving in the city, using your air conditioning can use extra gas in conjunction with frequent stops, starts, and sitting traffic. As long as it’s nice weather out, you can save yourself some gas – and get some fresh air – with the windows rolled down.
However, if you’re driving on the freeway, it’s a different story. The drag caused by open windows makes your car work harder to maintain cruising speed, which in turn burns more gas.
4. Refueling in the morning will save you money at the pump
The idea behind this myth is that gasoline, like other liquids, expands in warmer temperatures so pumping warm gas in the middle of the day means you’re getting less – literally – bang for your buck.
However, the gasoline reservoirs at gas stations are stored underground for a reason. Underground, fuel stays at a more consistent temperature throughout the day. The temperature would have to get quite warm – or cold – to significantly impact the temperature of the fuel going into your gas tank regardless of the time of day.
5. You should get all 4 tires replaced at the same time
One of the most common car maintenance myths is that you need to get all of your tires replaced at the same time. This isn’t necessarily true. For front and rear-wheel drive vehicles, you can replace one, two, or even three tires at once. Just make sure they’re the same type as the remaining tires on your vehicle.
If you have an all-wheel drive vehicle, however, you’ll typically need to replace AWD tires in pairs, if not all at once. This will depend on the amount of wear on them.
Preventive Car Maintenance And More At T3 Atlanta
Whether you have questions about car maintenance myths, need routine maintenance, or require comprehensive repairs on your vehicle, T3 Atlanta can help. We provide fast and friendly service for Nissan, Infiniti, Lexus, and Toyota vehicles at our convenient Smyrna and Decatur locations. Give us a call and we’ll book you in for repairs so you can drive with the confidence and peace of mind that your vehicle is in top condition.