Next to having their own house, many people dream of buying their own car because apart from being a status symbol, a car makes day-to-day traveling much easier. That’s why many car owners treat their vehicles like their own child, showering it with more love and attention than it actually needs.
That’s not always a bad thing; if the owner is attentive towards the needs of their car, then they would notice anything strange or out of the ordinary. So sometimes, a little paranoia can save the day. This, in turn, will urge the owner to take their car to an auto mechanic before the problem gets any worse.
Routine maintenance and inspections are important in caring for a vehicle. However, there can be times when life gets in the way, and the owner won’t notice the damages their car sustained until it’s too late to do anything about it. To avoid this from happening, you must always keep your eyes peeled for signs of damage.
But how do you differentiate a simple issue from a deep-seated problem? The quick answer is, you don’t unless you’re knowledgeable about car engines and auto parts. If you’re not that experienced with cars, it would be best to leave it in the hands of a professional. Here are four signs that you need to bring your car in for an inspection:
Sign #1: You Feel a Constant and Excessive Vibration
This could be a problem with your wheels or tires. When you experience excessive vibration from your car, it can be a potential sign that the tires are worn out unevenly, or the alignment of your wheels is imbalanced. Another issue is loosened lug nuts, which may be what’s causing the wheels to shake.
If the problem doesn’t have anything to do with your wheels or tires, the culprit may be within your engine and transmission. If you’re distracted by the intense vibrations, you may have a harder time concentrating on the road, so it’s better to have it checked out immediately.
Sign #2: Your Car’s Engine Is Belching out Smoke
It’s normal for your tailpipe to puff out white smoke when the engine starts, but it’s another thing if the smoke is coming from under the hood after you’ve been driving for a while. Not only will that be dangerous to you because it can obscure your vision, but it will also be harmful to other drivers on the road.
Many things may cause smoke coming from the engine: a bad gasket that’s causing the fluids to leak onto the hot engine, burning raw fuel, defective fuel pressure regulator, or even an electrical failure. The only way to know for sure is to have it checked, so don’t wait until your car breaks down in the middle of the road to find out.
Sign #3: You Hear Clicking Sounds While Driving
Clicking sounds are annoying, but they are also a sign that’s something’s wrong with your car. For instance, rapid clicking sounds can indicate that there’s a problem with your car’s battery or alternator, which means that your battery is no longer charging properly and may need to be replaced.
You can also hear clicking noises when your car is low on oil levels because it lacks lubrication, which then causes friction. Routinely checking on your engine fluids may take care of this problem, but watch out for any leaks because that could be the reason why your car is always low on fluids.
Sign #4: Your Car Takes Too Long to Wake
There’s nothing worse than jumping into your car when you’re already late for your meeting, only to find out that it won’t start. Or that it will, but it could take a long time to wake. When you experience this more than once, it might be time to head to the nearest auto shop and have your car inspected.
This is because failing to start your car may be a sign of bad wiring, a worn starter, a dead battery, or even a few charging system problems. Before your car dies in the middle of traffic, consider bringing it in for a tune-up because prevention is still better and cheaper than a cure.
Taking care of your car isn’t as complex and time-consuming as raising an actual human being, but no one’s going to shame you for treating your car like your child. Doing so shows that you value your vehicle and all the money you spent on it, which is why you’re determined to have it for as long as you can.