A car needs care. While a sudden pull or wrench can be ignored, other changes in your driving experience should be given immediate attention. Issues in your car that might appear minor in the first look can lead to a host of other problems in the car if left unattended. At its worst, they can undermine you and your vehicle’s safety. Hence, it is always better to have your car serviced regularly by professional mechanics at a car servicing center.
Here we enlist the signs that should alarm you to rush for car servicing so that you can prevent car disasters costing you an exorbitant sum of money and hassle.
1# Ignition Problems: In case your car does not start smoothly after turning the key twice or thrice, or if it stops and halts soon after ignition, then it is time you a get a professional’s help. The problem could lie in dying battery or broken starter motor but a timely servicing will help you nip it in the bud before it turns into something big.
2# Flashing Check Engine Light: If the check engine light turns yellow or red, there is something wrong in the functioning of one of the systems that the car monitors. Here, it must be noted that an illuminated check engine light is not a reason to panic. But, at the same time, it is a strong indicator that you ought to get your engine checked soon. The underlying problem could be rooted in the emission system which can even completely damage the catalytic convertor if the vehicle is driven without necessary repair.
3# Smoke: Smoke emitted from the hood indicates overheating problems or defects in the radiator. If this problem is not sorted, it can damage the car engine. The steam is generally white in color. In case you are driving and smoke starts to come out of the hood, pull over to the side of the road. Check the temperature gauge on the dashboard. Ideally, the temperature needle should be in the middle of the gauge. If it’s maximum, wait for your car to cool before driving again.
In case you see blue smoke coming out of the car, stop immediately and consider getting assistance. Blue smoke is caused by burning oil, and can turn into a costly problem if left unfixed.
Excessive smoke from the exhaust can be a result of an oil leak. During winters, one may notice a more than usual white smoke at first. This is a normal condition which occurs when water vapors come out of the exhaust system in the cold. Once the engine temperature increases it happens no more.
But otherwise, if you are driving and find excessive smoke fuming out from the exhaust, or see a black residue near the exhaust pipe of your car, take the next available appointment with your mechanic for car service. The underlying problem could be piston wear and tear, wearing out of valve seals, worn-out piston rings and engine oil seals, a leakage in intake manifold gas or failure of head gasket.
4# Leaks: If you spot major leaks under your car on the parking ground it is time to take it to a car service center. Do check for leaks towards the front part of the car. In case the leak is bright green in color it is a coolant leakage. Otherwise, if the leaking fluid is dark red/ brown oil in color, it is the oil and break fluids that are flowing down. An oil leak can prove to be dangerous to the car’s lifespan. It also reduces car’s performance.
Note here that while the air conditioner is running in the summer months, small amount of fresh water dripping near the front passenger side is pretty normal. It is the result of an AC working in extremely hot temperatures.
5# Noises and Abnormal Vibrations: Any new noise coming from the car should be inspected. A droning noise could be because of a wheel bearing gone bad. A squeal from the car when slowing down is probably a problem in the brakes. A grinding or squealing noise when slowing down is also probably because of a defect in the brakes and should be checked.
Be it a subtle untimely movement or an unavoidable shudder – every vibration which is not caused by road surface is worth looking into. A common cause of abnormal vibration is tyre wear. Ensure that the car tyres have at least the minimum requirement of Tyre tread – 1.6mm and see that they are not wearing unevenly. The cause could be something as small as a loose piece of displaced plastic panel or it could be something serious like failed universal joint and loosened bearing. Worse, the abnormal vibrations could be due to worn-out brake discs, a suspension problem or an issue with your steering. In situations like this, it is not safe to drive. So get your car serviced as soon as possible.
Once you start to watch out for these signs closely, you won’t have to wait for a breakdown to rush for car service. Reading these signs will enable you to get rid of the minor defects before they turn into monstrous troubles. With proper care given to your car, it will be your perfect travel companion for years to come.
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