Car Care: Maintenance Tips for a Lasting Relationship

Car care tips to extend the life of your car

A car is a major financial investment, and it is often the key to keeping your life and all of your responsibilities on track. But without regular maintenance, the machine that keeps your life humming will break down.

To keep your car moving along for years to come, implement the following maintenance tips into your car care regimen.

Start smart

Investing in any car won’t get you the mileage you need. That’s why ConsumerReports.org stresses the importance of purchasing a vehicle that has a stellar, reliable and safe reputation as well as boasts the features you need to complement your lifestyle.

“While you’re out shopping, keep a sharp eye out for cars that have the latest safety features,” advises to ConsumerReports.org. “Electronic stability control is a must, and consider a vehicle with a rear camera and forward collision, lane departure, and blind-spot warnings. Remember to research how well any vehicle you’re interested in performed in government and insurance-industry safety tests.”

Make it shine inside and out

A dirty car is not only an eyesore; it’s a sign that your car is slowly deteriorating. According to PopularMechanics.com Alex Leanse, a good washing removes corrosion-causing contaminants especially during winter months when road salt saturates every inch of your car. Be sure to pay special cleaning attention to your vehicle’s undercarriage because road salt will decimate metal parts.

Opening the door to a cluttered, filthy cabin will diminish the joy of driving. Plus, who wants to breathe in gross, unidentifiable smells on their daily commute? Be sure to lessen the contents in your trunk as well — extra weight will just make your car work harder than it already does, according to Leanse.

Change oil (regularly)

Oil changes are not optional. If you want your car to run as well as it can for as long as it can, consistent oil changes, as recommended by your owner’s manual, are the equivalent to maintenance gold.

“Check and change the oil. No single step will help an engine last more than regular oil and filter changes will. Conversely, nothing will destroy an engine faster than neglecting oil-level checks or fresh-oil changes,” reports KelleyBlueBook.com.

In addition to recommended oil changes, your owner’s manual also boasts a regular maintenance schedule unique to your ride, which ConsumerReports.org highly advises you follow. By keeping up with scheduled maintenance, you can potentially avoid costly repairs by spotting problems early.

Engage your senses

If you only give your car a passing glance, you’ll miss out on important warning signs. Is your tire tread wearing unevenly? Is there a scratch on your exterior that wasn’t there before and seems to be growing before your eyes? Do your tires look low? When was the last time you checked the pressure? Do you notice a weird smell when you hit the gas? What about the grinding sound you hear when you hit the brakes? Has your steering wheel always vibrated that much?

If you see, smell, feel or hear something that doesn’t seem right, it’s best to investigate the problem further and/or get your vehicle to the mechanic as soon as possible, according to ConsumerReports.org.

With regular maintenance, consistent cleaning and knowing when to seek help from an automotive professional, you’ll be able to keep your car running for miles and miles.

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Vehicle Profile: 2018 Hyundai Sonata

Meet the refreshed 2018 Hyundai Sonata

Returning for 2018 with a new exterior and more standard and available features to enhance the driving experience, the new Hyundai Sonata is better than ever before.

Refreshed exterior

To begin with, the 2018 Sonata features a refreshed exterior design. A remade front fascia supports a new “cascading” front grille. The changes carry over to the rear with a redesigned rear fascia as well.

The exterior can come with some intelligent and advanced features. For example, in the rear there is the available hands-free smart trunk with auto open. This system automatically opens the trunk when it senses the Proximity Key behind the vehicle for more than three seconds, so when you are loaded down with armloads of boxes and bags, the Sonata has you covered.

Serene interior

Inside the cabin, the driver and passengers can appreciate the spaciousness of the 2018 Sonata, which has the most head and leg room in its class with a total interior volume of 122.4 cubic feet.

As for more active comfort features, the Sonata has available dual climate control, which finally solves the fight over the air conditioning dials by letting both the driver and front passenger choose their own temperature.

Active safety

The 2018 Hyundai Sonata is a fully modern vehicle, which means a whole suite of available active safety features are included with it.

One of these systems is Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross-traffic Alert. This uses the same set of sensors on the rear of the vehicle to perform two functions. While moving forward it keeps an eye on the Sonata’s blind spots to prevent accidental collisions with unseen vehicles. While moving backward it watches and warns the driver if a vehicle is approaching from either side to prevent parking lot accidents.

The 2018 Hyundai Sonata can also be equipped with automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, which watches for obstacles in front of the Sonata and warns the driver of potential collisions. If a collision seems imminent, the vehicle will automatically apply the brakes itself.

The 2018 Hyundai Sonata has returned this model year with a new face and some new features, but it is as ready as always to take the passenger vehicle segment by storm.

This article is presented by Boucher Automotive Group in Southeast Wisconsin.