Your vehicle requires regular maintenance and repairs to keep it running smoothly, but you don’t necessarily need a professional mechanic for everything. If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to perform some of the basics, we’ve got advice to help get you started.
1. Secure the necessary tools
Mechanic’s toolset: These versatile toolsets generally include Allen wrenches and socket sets with a range of sizes.
Oil filter wrench: Your oil filter’s lid can stick due to infrequent opening between oil changes. This tool will come in handy if you decide to refill your oil.
Car jack with stands: This is an essential tool for performing tasks underneath your vehicle. Not only does the jack help lift and hold your car up, but the stands also add more support for your safety.
Battery charger and jumper: If your car battery dies, a battery charger and jumper cables will help can help you start things up again.
Tire gauge: This tool helps you measure the air pressure in your tires, indicating when it’s time for a fill. Maintaining the appropriate air pressure helps keep your tires in good, safe working condition.
Safety gear: The right safety can make all the difference. At a minimum, make sure you have good-quality mechanic gloves and safety eyeglasses.
2. Review your car’s service manual
Your car’s service manual contains information that can make your repair jobs easier. Manuals include detailed instructions on how to repair various parts of your car including its engine, transmission, and brakes.
If you can’t locate yours, you can typically find model-specific manuals for purchase online.
3. Do your homework
Start every car repair by conducting some research.
There are plenty of resources available from online experts through video and step-by-step guides to help you perform specific repairs to your vehicle.
Skipping research when learning something new can cost you extra time and money in the long run.
4. Have a camera available
Throughout the repair process, it’s helpful to take pictures of your car to document the specific placement of parts. You can refer to the images to reduce errors and complete repairs more successfully.
5. Keep a car repair maintenance log
Once you’re finished with your repair, record it in a detailed maintenance log, including the date and type of work completed. This will help you keep track of recurring maintenance needs.
You can use a notebook or purchase an actual maintenance log from your local auto parts store to track your information.
Once you’ve got the standard tools and knowledge base, you’re ready to start fixing your car at home—and potentially saving money, too!
At Dairyland®, we’re dedicated to helping you find the coverage you need. Talk to your Dairyland agent today to explore your coverage options.