Is there anything better than that new-car smell? We think not. The smell of fresh leather entwined with new oil and a clean engine. It’s nothing short of perfection. Then there’s the shiny exterior. The sun gleams off the pristine paintwork and freshly waxed body. The metallic finishes and alloys sparkle at every glance. Inside the car, the upholstery is new, the stitching is perfect. The engine purrs warmly as you turn the key in the ignition, and the handling is just perfect.
Skip forward two years, and the car’s a mess. It smells of spilled Ribena, it’s covered in dirt and flies, and the engine’s making that weird clunky sound. It doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, you can keep your car showroom fresh for years after your purchase. All it takes is a little TLC and attention. You’re going to need to get your hands dirty, and open up to the bonnet too. But, it’s all worth it. Here’s how you keep your new car in perfect condition.
It’s very obvious advice, but it would surprise you to know that many owners treat their cars poorly. They accelerate far too quickly, they push the boundaries of top speeds, and they change gears at the wrong time. You might think your car is designed to be pushed to the limit. After all, it’s fun! Whilst it might be exciting, you’re slowly killing the engine. Whenever your engine has to work harder, it slowly gives out. So, drive it sensibly, stick to gentle acceleration, and change gears early. You’ll preserve the car, and keep it at it’s best.
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If you want long, healthy life from your vehicle, you’ve got to get your hands dirty. That means getting under the bonnet, and tinkering with the engine parts. Don’t worry, it’s not as scary as it sounds. Your main areas of concern are the fluids. Here, you should check the oil level bi-weekly, and change it every 3,000 miles. Check the coolant and brake fluids too. Next, check your air filters; they should be nice and clean to let plenty of oxygen into the engine. If they’re full of dirt, clean them or replace them. Lastly, keep your tyres at the correct pressure, and replace them when the tread wears down. By doing this, you’ll spot the early signs of future problems.
Appearances are everything when it comes to a new car. It’s not difficult to get that showroom look if you put in the effort. It’s not just about aesthetics though. Dirt on your car can cause irreversible damage to the bodywork. Those dead flies and bird droppings will slowly cause rust to appear on the paintwork. Give the vehicle a thorough clean every couple of weeks. Ideally, you should opt for a hand wash rather than a machine. Finish it with a full buffer and wax to keep it shining for longer!
In addition to your self-maintenance, you ought to take the car in for annual servicing. Our friends at Currie Motors tell us they offer servicing contracts on every car they sell. If your dealer does this, take advantage. The experts will spot health problems well before you, and can treat them quickly.
If you love your pride and joy, make sure you keep it showroom fresh. Follow this advice, and you can’t go wrong!
Jyotsna Ramani is a passionate writer and an avid globetrotter. She had a knack for writing since her early years, though that was mostly letters to her penpals and jotting her thoughts down in her "Dear Diary". Over the years, she realized how her hobby could turn into a full time career and she started writing web content, books and pieces for local magazines. There has been no looking back ever since.
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