Car Maintenance Can Prevent Needing Roadside Assistance

If you’ve come across this article, chances are you’re looking for a local towing service for emergency breakdowns and the like. While it’s good to be prepared by having the necessary numbers for such services such as roadside Assistance in Woodstock, there is also wisdom in exploring preventative measures. Cars can stop working for any number of reasons, ranging from the mundane to the highly technical. Most modern cars claim to more-or-less look after themselves, which in turn has reduced general consumer competency when it comes to maintaining them. Doing these checks yourself can save you both time and money, as well as increase the longevity of your car.

Here is some basic car maintenance you can do at home.

Checking and Changing Oil

If you don’t mind getting a little dirty, and are happy to invest in some tools that will pay for themselves in savings, then change your own oil and filter. Before doing any of this though, it’s important to consider the frequency at which oil should be changed. Experts will generally state that oil should be changed every 3,000 miles, but as I have a relatively new car I will usually change mine every 5,000 miles. The frequency you should change your oil depends on the age and condition of your car: every 3,000 miles for older cars; every 5,000 miles for newer.

Always make sure your engine isn’t hot when checking or changing oil, if you have recently driven to the store to buy the tools allow the car to cool down for an hour or two.

Checking Oil

You will need:

  • An old rag
  1. Pop the hood of the car and unscrew the dipstick, carefully pulling it out.
  2. Wipe the dipstick down with the rag and screw it back down, leave for a moment before pulling it out to check.
  3. There should be indicators on the dipstick to show you how much oil there should be, if you’re low it might be time for a change.

Changing Oil

You will need:

  • A car jack or a couple of small ramps which you can drive up onto
  • Ratchet
  • Oil filter wrench
  • Oil pan
  • Funnel
  1. Make sure the engine has had plenty of time to cool first.
  2. Use the ramps or jack to lift the car, get underneath and locate the oil pan.
  3. Unscrew the drain plug and drain the old oil into your oil pan. Once it has all drained, replace the drain plug.
  4. Locate the oil filter in the engine and carefully remove using the oil filter wrench, mind the filter contains old oil too.
  5. Lubricate the rubber gasket on the new oil filter with your new oil.
  6. Fill the new oil filter to about two-thirds with new oil.
  7. Screw in new oil filter, hand-tighten only.
  8. Using your funnel with the engine with new oil.

And voila! You’ve changed the oil and are now slightly less likely to need roadside assistance in Woodstock VA. Locals that I’ve spoken with about changing oil have said they’re happy to help their neighbors, so don’t hesitate to ask around if you need any help.

Air Filter

After changing your oil, changing your air filter will seem incredibly easy. This should be done every 12 months or every 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. Changing your air filter can be done with zero tools and experience, and can only take about 10 minutes.

Changing Air Filter

You will need:

  • A new air filter for your car
  1. Pop the hood up and locate the air filter, it should be in a black rectangular box with metal clips on the side. Check your owner’s manual if you don’t see it.
  2. Open the casing and take a photo of how the air filter is sitting in the box, making note of which way it’s facing.
  3. Remove the old air filter and dispose of it appropriately, put the new air filter in exactly how the other one was set (refer to photos or notes).
  4. Close the metal clips and close the hood.

Other Simple Car Maintenance Checks You Can Do Yourself

Once you’re comfortable changing the oil and air filter, you may be keen to discover what else you can check on your car. There are a huge number of things which can be done with minimal tools and experience, just be sure to not overextend yourself and leave the big jobs to the pros.

Roadside Assistance Woodstock VA

Despite any amount of maintenance checks we do, accidents do happen. We here at Shenandoah are well aware of this, and are in the business of coming to the rescue with our professional towing, roadside assistance and repair in Woodstock VA.

Contact us if you’re ever in a pinch or would like to know more about our services beforehand in case such an emergency does occur.


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