Drivers in Houston, Texas, know that taking care of their car is important, but what many drivers may not consider is that certain habits can also have a significant impact on the overall performance of their vehicles. At Santa Ana Auto Care, we understand that you want to keep your car in the best shape possible to avoid a trip to your local Houston auto shop, so we’ve laid out 6 habits to kick to keep your car running at its best:
- Driving with a Low Gas Tank
Always aim to keep a full tank of gas in your vehicle. Driving on a low gas tank leads to decreased fuel mileage and causes the fuel pump to wear out quickly. When there is an ample amount of gas in the tank, the fuel pump is submerged and remains cool. However, driving without enough gas exposes the fuel pump to air inside the tank, causing the pump to heat up and wear out. Stopping more often to refuel may seem like a hassle, but it is vital to keep your car running well and reduce the need for repairs in the future.
- Ignoring Warning Signals
One of the most important habits to kick for the sake of your car is ignoring warning signals. If you notice the check engine light come on, or your car begins making strange noises, it’s an indication that there is a problem. Ignoring these signals can lead to costly auto repairs and can lead to driving in an unsafe car. As soon as you notice anything out-of-the-ordinary in your car, stop by a reputable auto shop, like Santa Ana Auto Care, for a diagnosis.
- Slamming on Your Brakes
This habit can be hard to kick, especially when driving in the Houston traffic. However, slamming on your brakes too often causes more damage than you might think. Not only does this habit cause the brakes to overheat and wear out faster, it can also trigger your ABS (anti-lock braking system) unnecessarily and cause premature wear. Try easing up on the brake and avoid braking too harshly by keeping plenty of space between you and the car ahead of you.
- Carrying Unnecessary Weight
While there are some items you always want to have in your car, like jumper cables or a flash light, carrying items that are not vital can add unnecessary weight. Excessive weight in your car places stress on the drivetrain and suspension, causing both components to wear out more quickly. Consider moving some items out of your car to reduce the total weight and prevent more frequent trips to a Houston auto shop.
- Not Coming to a Complete Stop When Switching from Reverse to Drive
When reversing your car, many drivers will shift from reverse to drive while the car is still rolling backwards. While common, this habit can damage the drivetrain on your vehicle. Suddenly forcing the drivetrain to move from reverse to drive places unnecessary stress on the component and dramatically shortens its life. Kick this habit and protect your car by coming to a complete stop before switching the car from reverse to drive. It’s a simple change that can save you money in the long run.
- Not Checking Your Car’s Oil
Problems with the oil are the most common and potentially expensive car maintenance issue. Sometimes, troubles arise in your car that can reduce the oil level to extremely low levels. If you never check the oil level, you may not be aware of an issue that can cause serious damage and lead to an expensive engine repair. Check your car’s oil level every couple of weeks to ensure that there is enough oil for the engine to run smoothly.
Habits can be hard to kick, especially for seasoned drivers. However, these habits can cause unnecessary damage to your car and lead to expensive automotive repairs. To help ensure your car is running in top shape, give Santa Ana Auto Care a call at (713) 956-1145. We’re a leading auto care shop in Houston, Texas.