Car Parts: from A – Z
April 21, 2017 Topic: Safety Tips
If you find that your car is veering to one side, you may have an alignment issue. It is important to get your alignment checked annually, usually when you get your tires rotated.
If you feel your brakes shudder, squeak or grind when you stop your vehicle, it’s very important to get them replaced ASAP. Get a free quote on brake repair from Brakes To Go today!
Coolant is a mixture of water and ethylene glycol and is very important for your car to function properly. In conjunction with the radiator, coolant helps keep your car from overheating. If you notice a pool of coolant under your car while it’s parked, you may have a coolant leak. When you see this, be sure to contact a mechanic.
Your vehicle’s drive belt is a reinforced, ribbed rubber belt that delivers power to your alternator, air conditioning, power steering, cooling system, and other important components in your vehicle. Usually lasting up to 150,000 miles, your drive belt will begin its telltale signs of needing replacement when you begin to hear a loud squeal when you turn your car on. It is very critical to get the belt inspected and/or replaced when this sound appears because, without your drive belt, your car cannot function.
It’s always important to keep a small roadside kit in case you find yourself stranded while driving. Assembling your kit is different from person to person, but generally, it is good to have a few essential items: road flares, high-protein energy snacks, water bottles, $20, first aid kit, blankets, and a good flashlight.
Your vehicle’s fuel filter is a replaceable metal or plastic canister that prevents particulate matter and most contaminants in the fuel from reaching the engine. It is recommended that the filter be replaced every 20,000-40,000 miles.
Essential things to keep in your glove compartment: proof of insurance, vehicle manual, and emergency contact info.
Driving at night is made more dangerous by dim and dirty headlights, so make sure your headlights are de-hazed.
Pay attention to your instrument panel (dashboard) in your car. Familiarize yourself with the warning lights for your car, by accessing your owner’s manual. Make sure you know what to do when a new warning light comes on.
Keep your jack handy and know how to use it, in the case of a flat tire.
Keep an extra set of keys with you, in case you lock your first set in the car or misplace them.
As of November 1, 2016, the DMV no longer sends you replacement plates every 7 years. Make sure your vehicle is registered properly and remember to re-apply for new plates within the 60-day grace period before expiration.
Engine exhaust manifolds are the metal parts responsible for collecting exhaust gasses and transporting them to the exhaust for ejection from the tailpipe. If you notice your engine is becoming very noisy, or a decrease in your engine’s power, acceleration, and fuel efficiency, you may have a damaged manifold.
Keeping a hands-free navigation system in your car can take the hassle and headache out of reaching a new location, making your journey safer and more enjoyable.
Make sure you are aware of your vehicle’s maintenance schedule and know when to get your car’s oil replaced. Most maintenance schedules will recommend replacing your oil every 3,000 miles. Refer to your vehicle’s owner manual to be informed about what type of oil goes into your car, which will help you communicate more effectively with your mechanic.
Power steering is an electric and/or hydraulic system that multiplies the force a driver exerts on the steering wheel, for ease and comfort. Make sure to keep your hydraulic fluid filled to keep your engine running efficiently.
Questions About Your Vehicle?
If you come across anything in your car that confuses you, refer to your vehicle’s owner manual. Not only can it help you learn more about the specific workings of your car, but it can also help you tackle most of the unexpected troubles you may encounter, such as flat tires and overheating. Besides using a smartphone to look things up, your manual is your most important tool for understanding how specifically your car functions and can help you out of a tight spot. When in doubt, however, contact Brakes To Go, for all car-related questions.
Your car’s radiator is responsible for the thermal regulation in your car. With the summer months approaching, it is useful to know how to spot an overheating problem before it happens. Keep your eye on your car’s temperature gauge, and make sure to keep your car’s coolant levels in check.
The job of your vehicle’s suspension is to maximize the friction between the tires and the road surface, which provides steering stability and better handling to ensure the comfort of passengers. Every time you drive, your car handles bumpy roads, turns corners smoothly, and keeps your tires gripped on the road, all thanks to the suspension.
If you find that your car is veering to one side, you may have an alignment issue. But before spending money on an alignment, make sure to check your tire air pressure and wear. Often times, refilling the air in your tires, and then getting your tires rotated can help with uneven wear.
Under the Hood
Car owners should be familiar with their vehicle’s engine. Reference your owner’s manual and familiarize yourself with all of the parts there, such as the brake fluid cap, the clutch fluid cap, the battery, the transmission fluid dipstick, the engine oil dipstick, and the radiator and coolant reservoirs. Understanding your vehicle’s maintenance schedule and knowing what to look for is very important in extending the lifespan of your car.
Your vehicle’s sun visor is a hinged flap above the driver and front passenger seats. The visor acts as a shield for your eyes, protecting them from dangerous glare.
Your vehicle’s wiper blades should be replaced every 6 months to a year, or when you begin to notice a difference in visibility when you drive. This is a critical but often overlooked problem since most people will assume that their wipers are fine because they are intact, while they are actually putting you in danger by compromising your visibility.