car from driver's seat

DIY: How to Do Routine Car Maintenance Yourself

The average age of the car driving on the road today is 11.8 years. There’s a difference in age across the country as cars on the west coast tend to be older at 12.4 years. Vehicles from the northeast are only an average of 10.9 years old.

To keep your car running and reliable for this long, you need to perform routine car maintenance. But you don’t have to take it to a dealer or mechanic for this work.

There are several maintenance tasks that you can do yourself at home. Keep reading to learn about the routine maintenance you can do to keep your car running for years to come.

Clean or Change Your Air Filter

Your air filter cleans and purifies the air that goes into your engine. The cleaner this air is, the cleaner your engine will stay. This is important as a gummed up engine full of debris won’t run efficiently, and eventually won’t run at all.

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Under your hood near the engine, you should see an air filter box. Open it up and remove the filter. If you have a paper filter, throw it away and put a new one in.

You can also upgrade your filter to a washable one. These filters perform better and allow you to wash and return them to your car.

Change Your Windshield Wipers

About every six months to a year, you’ll need to buy new wiper blades. This is vital to do right before the rainy season in your area. Wiper blades ensure that the water gets removed from your windshield so that you can see while driving.

All you need to do is pop off your old ones, buy a new set at your local auto store, and pop them on. There are directions in your service repair manual as to how you take your car’s wipers on and off.

Oil Change

The oil in your car is what keeps the engine running smooth. As you drive, it collects the dust, dirt, and metal debris that enters your engine’s system. You need to change your oil so that it can continue to perform this process.

To change your oil, you’ll need to either jack or lift your car. Then take off the nut on the bottom of your drain pan, letting all of the oil drain out into a container.

Replace that nut and then pour in your new oil under the hood. Always wait until your vehicle is cool before performing this task. No one wants to get burned by hot oil.

While you’re at it, you should also change your oil filter. This can be found under the hood. Before you add new oil, unscrew the old filter and screw on a new one.

Perform These Routine Car Maintenance Tasks

By taking care of your car and performing these routine car maintenance tasks, you can ensure that your vehicle will stay in tip-top condition. This will give you many years of driving enjoyment.

Try creating a calendar with reminders. This will ensure you stay on top of when you need to perform maintenance.

Browse our many repair guide blog posts for more advice and guidance on your DIY car maintenance.