You already know you need to take care of your car, now comes the part where you execute the plan. There’s no greater feeling than driving home a brand new car. Whether it’s directly off the lot or a used vehicle that’s new to you, climbing in the driver’s seat of a fresh set of wheels is always exhilarating.
Of course, you’ll enjoy everything about your car for the first few months. Maybe even the first full year will keep you blissfully happy, but what about all the maintenance that’s required? Oil changes, washings, tire rotations, and vehicle upgrades are all part of the process — and all likely to become less fun as time moves on. The good news is that there are steps to take that will make your upkeep easier down the road.
Car sales are at an all-time high. With more than 15 million new sales per year, there are plenty of new vehicles on the road. That also means that there is a huge market for maintenance items. From top-end detailing businesses to mechanical upgrades and performance enhancers, every imaginable aid or piece of equipment can be found. So which ones are necessary and which ones should you avoid? We’ll fill you in with our list of tips for conserving your new ride.
1. Car Cover
Garages are expensive, carports are ugly, and leaving your brand new or mint-condition car out in the elements is no way to take care of a prize possession. So what’s the answer? That’s simple: it’s a car cover.
And, if you’re worried about throwing an ugly sheet over your vehicle, think again. Baggy, neutral color covers are relics. Now you can own a form-fitting car cover that looks great stretched over any ride. Color combinations have progressed to fun and fashionable designs while licensed covers are also available.
For a fun or fanatic look, try NASCAR car covers with your favorite driver’s number. No matter what option you choose, you can rest easy that your vehicle is protected from the weather. Keep your costs down and your security up with an alternative to that pricy garage.
2. Maintain Your Fluids
If you’re going to drive your car in cold temperatures, it’s best to keep an eye on the coolant levels. Maintaining the proper amount of antifreeze will keep the engine from freezing — if there are no leaks, that is. Retaining a full tank of gas is also important for keeping your car running smoothly. This will prevent water from accumulating in the fuel pump and allow more room for error if you’re caught in a winter storm.
3. Spend More on Tires
There may be no more important aspect to your car than the tires. As a general rule of thumb, better brands are worth the extra money. Paying up for reliability and performance is a smart decision when factoring in how much your original investment cost.
It’s also wise to make the switch over for winter. Having a more secure grip on the highway or being able to navigate snowy back roads keeps both your schedule and safety intact.
4. Exterior Maintenance
It’s possible to keep that new-car look for a lifetime with the correct care. Details, washings, waxings, and touchups are all part of the package that comes with owning a fancy driving machine.
Maintaining a twice-a-year waxing schedule is optimal for keeping the coat shiny, while spraying your car with a protectant after will give you a look that everyone envies. A little tire shine and touchup paint will do the rest of the work. Oh, and don’t forget the rust proofer — a necessity if you want to maintain value.
5. Keep a Strict Service Schedule
Most importantly, get your car a date with a good mechanic. Be paranoid about every bump, sound, and touch you encounter. Regular inspection on mechanical parts as well as tire rotations, oil changes, and spark plug replacements are recommended.
Mapping out a semiannual or thrice-yearly service schedule is a smart, sensible choice once you pick up your new ride. With such a stringent calendar in place, it’s even worth it to consider extended warranty options. Taking advantage of any and every opportunity that the dealer offers is just shrewd business. By sticking to these main points, you’ll squeeze plenty of years out of your top-end luxury car.