To keep your love affair with your car alive, here are 45 ways to keep your car looking and running like new:
1) Drive carefully.
2) Don’t race the engine.
3) Proceed with caution; experts say most wear on the engine and drive train happens within the first ten to fifteen minutes of drive time.
4) Refrain from driving at high speeds.
5) Observe speed limits.
6) Refrain from fast turns, fast starts and fast stops.
7) Try to avoid potholes and drive over railroad tracks slowly.
8) Put your key chain on a diet; the weight of your keychain can lead to ignition switch failure.
9) Keep records when you fill up, paying special attention to gas mileage.
10) Fill it up; keeping the gas tank filled will help prevent condensation from accumulating in the tank.
11) Wash your vehicle routinely.
12) Use micro fiber cloths.
13) Park in the shade, the garage or use a car cover.
14) Vacuum and clean the interior regularly.
15) Use floor mats.
16) If seats are leather, use leather cleaner and a leather protectant.
17) If seats are fabric, use upholstery cleaner and a good fabric protectant.
18) Use tire and wheel cleaner.
19) Place a towel under car seats to catch spills and crumbs.
20) Touch up scratches and paint nicks as soon as possible to prevent rust.
21) Replace broken or cracked taillight and headlight covers as soon as possible to prevent water damage.
22) Refill washer fluid before it runs out.
23) Don’t exceed towing limits.
24) Get a luggage or bike rack.
25) Check valve caps on tires and replace if needed.
26) Check tire pressure and keep tires at proper inflation levels.
27) Rotate your tires.
28) If things are out a whack, get an alignment as soon as possible.
29) Keep fluid levels up; check oil and transmission fluid regularly and use the correct grade.
30) Change oil when needed or as your service manual recommends.
31) Check power steering fluid once a month.
32) Check oil, fuel, transmission and air filters regularly and change when needed.
33) Check fans and belts routinely and look for wear, cracks and frays.
34) Look over all hoses and check for wear, small rips, cracks, frays or small holes.
35) Change spark plugs.
36) Clean your engine using a brush and grease cutting detergent or engine cleaning products.
37) Run the air conditioning a few times during winter months; this helps parts from freezing up.
38) Check your battery and keep it clean, wiping the battery and battery posts with a clean cloth or clean rag.
39) If the battery requires water, keep it at the proper fluid level.
40) Don’t forget to turn off your lights.
41) Check anti-freeze and coolant levels regularly and use a pre-measured 50/50 water and coolant mix.
42) Purchase a little fun, like new floor mats, seat covers or car bling.
43) Use carriers when transporting pets or animals.
44) Schedule routine maintenance.
45) When in doubt, see a mechanic.