An automotive mechanic changes the oil in a modern car

Do It Yourself: 3 Basic Car Maintenance Tips for Dummies

By trying to save some money, you can learn a lot of things; things that usually require hiring professionals. Besides learning to make improvements around the house, I also managed to become quite skillful when it comes to maintaining my car and performing some basic auto repairs. Believe me, I’m no car expert. I don’t even have some distinctive mechanical skills.

Still, I have managed to catch on quickly and handle repairs quick and easy, bringing my expenses down to a minimum. My car used to take up a lot of my budget, and I even considered selling it, however, once I’d started taking care of it all by myself, I managed to save quite a bit of money. If you are thinking about doing the same, stick around a while longer, and I’ll tell you three basic car maintenance tips that you can do all by yourself and how to do them.


Changing Your Air Filter

This is one of the easiest things that you can do to your car. You don’t need any tools to change the filter. The time you need to make the switch lasts around 10 minutes and it will cost you around 10 dollars. Every car needs a brand new filter put in every year or so. The recommended period after which you simply have to make the switch is 10,000 miles or at least once a year.

There are two options you can choose, either pay your mechanic a lot of money to take your car for an entire day, or you can do the replacement at home on your own in ten minutes. For me, the choice is obvious. Here is how to do it:

  • Open your hood and find the filter. It’s located in a rectangular black box that has metal clips on its sides. Normally it’s connected to a long air pipe. If you can’t find it, check the owner’s manual of your car.
  • Once you’ve opened the box, check how the filter is set. Remember where the filter was facing.
  • Remove the old one and switch it with a brand new filter, placing it in the exact same position the previous one was in. Before doing that, remember to clean or vacuum the box inside and outside.
  • When you are done, make sure that you close the metal clips.

Here is one video that shows you exactly how to do that:


Installing Wipers

basic car maintenance tips - installing wipers yourself

It’s funny to me when I remember that I used to buy expensive wiper blades just because auto parts stores offered free installation for them. It is recommended that you get new wipers every six or twelve months. Setting up wiper blades can be very different from one vehicle to another, and that’s why you should look into the owner’s manual. Still, this is the general principle:

  • As when you are washing your windshield, first you have to lift the blades, and then you detach the old ones.
  • Remember how the blades are attached to the metal arms.
  • Usually, you will see a tab located on the underside of your wiper. Push this tab in order to remove the blade.
  • Now, hook on the new blades while at the same time avoiding bending the arms of the wipers or scratching the windshield.
  • Make sure everything is lined up perfectly to ensure that the blades are tight and secure.

Here is another video that shows you how to change wiper blades, please click here to watch.


Tire Air Pressure Checks

The first thing you need to do is go through your owner’s manual to see what the optimal PSI for your tires is. After you’ve determined this, unscrew the valve on your wheel and press your air pressure gauge steadily on the valve in order to precisely read the pressure. Make sure that the angle of the gauge is properly set, so that it gives proper readings.

If you use a digital gauge, you will have to press a single button once you’ve attached it to the valve. This is pretty easy to do, but I’ve found an even easier and much quicker way to check air pressure. There is a brand new tire pressure monitoring system on the market called FOBO Tire, that allows you to check air pressure using your mobile phone. It’s the World First Bluetooth 4.0 Wireless TPMS system. The FOBO Tire system uses sensors and an app to determine what your current air pressure is. It doesn’t require any mechanical knowledge and it’s quick and simple.


These are the three basic car maintenance tips and repair tricks you can do on your own to save some money. Once you’ve learned to do these things, you can see how easy it is to perform even some more complicated repairs. Who knows? Maybe you have a passion for car mechanics and you don’t even know it yet.

That’s the 3 basic car maintenance tips that I think all people should know to save money. I know there are more. What’s your tips? Please comment below, I am more than happy to know. 🙂


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