A year of on and off lockdowns, home working and a lack of school runs has probably not been kind to your car. If your vehicle is languishing on your driveway, then it may be time to do something about it. As we head towards a post lockdown world, Leasing Options has created a list of 10 quick checks that you can do to save money on your car.
1. Get cleaning
Did you know that tree sap and bird droppings can damage your car’s paintwork? If you wait too long to clean them off, it could burn all the way through the paint surface to the metal. In order to repair this, you would need to repaint an entire panel. The cost of this starts at around £350.
So a very simple way to save money on your car is to clean it. Just giving it a wash down or applying a wax coat can help to prevent damage.
2. Think about your battery
You’re probably so used to driving around on a regular basis that you may not have thought about how your car’s battery is doing if you aren’t out on the roads.
In order to avoid any battery issues and an emergency call out to a recovery service, try to run your car’s engine for at least 15 minutes once a week.
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3. Level up those liquids
Now, most car drivers know that there are different types of liquids under the hood. What they all do, we may not completely understand. But what you need to know to save yourself some money is that if your car has been inactive for a long time, these liquids can separate.
So before revving up your engine again, check your liquid levels and give them a little top up if they need it.
4. Call in pest control
This may not be pleasant to think about, but small animals have a habit of setting up home anywhere. And if your car has been sat there for a while, they may have decided it is the perfect spot to nestle down.
Give your car a sweep and check for any wires that could have been chewed. This could save you money on any expensive repairs.
5. Feel the pressure
A key car maintenance task is to check your tyre pressure. If you haven’t used your car in a while, then it is particularly important to do this. Low pressure can lead to premature tyre wear, make your car difficult to control and increase the chances of punctures.
6. Check those flat spots
On the subject of tyres, check whether you have any flat spots. If your car has not moved in a while, its weight may have caused the tyres to flatten where they touch the ground. Replacement tyres can be expensive. So in order to save money on your car just make sure to move your car regularly to prevent flat spots.
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7. It’s brake time
Nobody wants rusty brakes. So once again, keeping them clean could really pay off in the long run. Taking the car out for a spin now and then can help to prevent any rust from building up.
8. Let go of that handbrake
There is nothing worse than being all set to go and the handbrake just won’t release. Inactivity can lead to it getting stuck. So if you want to avoid spending money replacing it because of rust and corrosion, make sure that you drive your car every now and then.
Alternatively, if it’s inactive and in a level location, maybe leave the car in gear rather than putting the handbrake on. Just remember to take it out of gear before starting it up again.
9. Fill up the tank
While you may be rubbing your hands with glee because you haven’t had to fill up in a while, your petrol tank will be less happy. If left inactive for longer than 30 days, moisture can accumulate in the tank. This can lead to all sorts of damage.
Filling up prior to any period of inactivity will slow the rate at which the fuel degrades due to oxidation. This in turn will save you money and keep your engine healthy.
10. Get on the road
The simplest way to save yourself money on your car is to take it for a spin. Regularly firing up the engine and going for a drive that is 15 minutes or longer will keep things moving as they should. The car’s lubricants can circulate, rust will be reduced and those flat spots can be prevented.
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