The truth about car maintenance is that it can be both expensive and time-consuming – no doubt about it, considering the need to pay attention to a good number of components that may have to be repaired or consumables that need to be replenished. The more distances you travel on your car, the greater the chances it has to degrade in quality. That’s why car maintenance is essential to keep your car running for much longer, and a lot of times, it really shouldn’t cost you as much for as long as you’re aware on what component within your car is necessary to maintain and what isn’t. With that, you must be able to avoid all the car maintenance myths surrounding your car – here are some to watch out for, alongside the truths addressing each one of them.
Myth # 1: Gas refills in the morning result to more fuel for your money
Many car owners have fallen to the hearsay alleging that the cooler air in the morning leads them to have more fuel for their money, compared to hotter conditions in the afternoon. With car maintenance the notion there is that the cooler the gasoline, the denser it will be, allowing you to have more for what you paid for. However, such a claim simply doesn’t make sense. Generally speaking, gasoline coming out of nozzles do not exhibit significant changes in temperature, even if they’re stored for 24 hours in underground tanks. Gas stations, presuming they do business well, can ensure that the gas they serve do not heat up as they’re pumped, and even so, only a fairly small amount gets depleted. Such makes your early morning rush to gas stations quite pointless since you’ll only get a trivial amount of extra gas. In fact, tanking up on the gas early in the morning might even lead you to burn more than you’re supposed to, rendering your effort to achieve cost-efficiency worthless. Instead, just gas up your car whenever it’s convenient or necessary for you.
Myth # 2: Sidewalls on your tires indicate the recommended pressure for tire inflation
Many car owners have been led to believe that the sidewalls found on their car’s tires correspond to the recommended amount of pressure they must apply in the course of tire inflation. However, such is simply not the case, since sidewalls on tires actually correspond to the maximum amount of pressure allowable. Thus, to achieve the best performance for your tires, make sure to ask your automaker’s recommended pressure for achieving superb handling, better ride comfort, gas mileage, and impeccable braking balance. More often than not, your automaker will point to your car’s glove box, fuel-filler door or doorjamb sticker as the components where your car’s recommended pressure for tire inflation is indicated. Failing to have your car’s tires maintained with the recommended amount of pressure can adversely affect fuel economy, which is why going maximum may not be the best way. At the same time, it is proper to conduct a monthly inspection of your car’s tire pressure so that you can check whether it needs to be increased to ensure better braking and handling and more managed wearing. Tires are a very important aspect of car maintenance.
Myth # 3: You have to change oil every time you clock in 3,000 miles
Car owners have always been misled by multiple reminders by many repair shops on the need to change oil for every 3,000 miles clocked when it comes to car maintenance. Such reminders tend to bring good business to repair shops, given the profits brought in by the higher frequency of oil change. Needless to say, announcements reminding car owners to change their oil every 3,000 miles are only designed to earn repair shops more money, but there simply is no technical justification for that rule concerning the well-being of cars. So make it a point not to worry when your car clocks in another 3,000 miles – that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to change oil already. Take note of the fact that most cars nowadays take a minimum of 7,500 miles before requiring an oil change. Plus, fuel consumption increases the more frequent your car undergoes oil change. All told, changing oil every 3,000 miles can only cost you more money for an oil change and fuel usage, without any positive effect on your car.
Myth # 4: You can enhance your car using premium fuel
Another misconception most car owners have revolved around the use of premium fuel as a way of increasing engine performance. Several cars run just fine on regular fuel, which is rated at 87 octanes. Neither performance nor well-being is compromised by the use of premium fuel, contrary to what many car owners perceive from advertisements. Higher octane ratings only translate to reducing problems prior to ignition, making premium fuel recommendable for cars with high-compression engines. However, you don’t need to use premium fuel if your car’s engine is designed to use 87 octane fuel – at best, you’ll only end up wasting money in doing so. Make sure to review your user’s manual to check whether your car’s engine requires you to use premium fuel, which has a higher octane rating than regular fuel. That way, you’ll be able to reasonably estimate your expenses for fuel.
Myth # 5: Air conditioning can degrade fuel economy
Several car owners have been arguing against one another on the link between air conditioning and fuel economy. While the myth that excessive air conditioning adversely affects any car’s fuel economy, tests have been able to prove that such is simply not the case. Opting to have the windows opened instead of using air conditioner doesn’t exactly translate to significant savings on fuel usage. At best, the difference between turning off the air conditioner and using it while on the road doesn’t amount to measurable differences in fuel economy. In fact, aerodynamic drag results from opening windows while driving – a factor that does affect fuel economy. Furthermore, using the air conditioner can help increase driving alertness, making every journey on the road much safer. Therefore, you mustn’t worry about using your air conditioner while driving – it wouldn’t affect your budget for fuel that much and can even keep you safe.