If you own a car, it’s important you learn how to diagnose it if you suspect it has a problem. This is because every car is vulnerable to mechanical problems due to wear and tear of various parts. Most car owners don’t bother to inspect their car before taking it to the mechanic. Such people are usually at the mercy of the mechanic because they know very little about cars and this could be a costly mistake. The problem is that a majority of mechanics use such an opportunity to exploit their customers by overcharging them even when the problem is minor. When you are an informed customer, you will take your car to the nearest garage with confidence because you know exactly what needs to be repaired or replaced. You will even be able to estimate the price of the part that needs to be replaced. Here are tips on where to start when your car develops a mechanical problem.
- Don’t ignore Screeching Noise
This is the most obvious indicator. In fact, a screeching sound is usually too loud to be ignored. If your car makes a screeching noise the moment you step on the brakes, there is a possibility that the brake pads are worn out. You should therefore have them replaced because they can cause you to be the next victim of a road accident. When the brake pads are in good shape, you can’t hear any noise when the car comes to a stop. Besides that, if the brakes pedal feels light or goes all the way to the floor of the car without any resistance, it could be that the brake discs are damaged.
- Pay Attention to Leakages
Leakages are very in common in vehicles in cars that are not taken for servicing regularly. The good thing is that the color of the fluid that’s leaking can direct you to what could be causing the problem. If the liquid is black or amber in color, it could be that the engine oil or gear oil has thinned out. You should then change the oil before the engine knocks. However, if the liquid is colorless and feels slippery in your fingers, it’s definitely the brake fluid that is leaking. When the coolant is leaking, you will spot a liquid that is either green, brown or yellow in color.
- Inspect the Battery
Your car can never start when the battery doesn’t have any charge. Such a problem demands you jump start the engine and get a replacement battery. If the terminals of the battery are dirty or are loosely attached, the engine will turn itself off. The best remedy would be to wipe the terminals with a piece of cloth. If the problem persists and you notice a white residue on the battery, it could be that the alternator is overcharging it. Your mechanic should adjust the alternator settings to ensure it stops charging when the battery is full.
- Use an Automotive Scanner
An automotive scanner is a game changer. It’s highly recommended for car owners that don’t know a lot about their engines. It’s basically a computerized tool that is designed to detect all mechanical problems in a car. The tool is equipped with sensors that are connected to the engine and display the diagnosis results on a screen. Once the tool is turned on, it immediately shows important car information, tips and guides on how to remedy the problems.