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Healthy ‘lifestyle’ choices for your car

Many of us have done this, declared to the world (or to our Facebook friends if anything) a ‘me day’ for ourselves—a time for us to regroup, recharge and get back on track. Like us, our cars also work and get things done, but there’s no ‘me day’ symbol on the dash that can light up whenever our cars need some pampering.

So, it’s up to us to do what we can to keep our rides healthy so that we can continue to rely on them to get us to work, get the kids to school, do our shopping, run our errands and take those road trips.

Here are some tips to keep that spark in your car and help you save money in the long run.

  1. Pay attention to warning signs: Don’t ignore the service indicator lights

    When the check-engine light or service indicator lights turn on, your car is trying to ‘tell’ you that something isn’t working properly. Take it to an automotive professional as soon as you can to avoid your car from becoming overworked or the initial issue leading to additional damage.

  2. Have a healthy routine: Get regular check-ups & follow manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule

    Even though we can’t see, hear or feel that there’s a problem, it doesn’t mean our car is in good shape. Cars need fluids changed, components aligned and parts replaced from time to time. Regular check-ups also help you prepare for upcoming maintenance and repairs by ensuring the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule is followed. This is listed in your owner’s manual and will help reduce the chance of failed parts—and having a roadside emergency!

  3. Make healthier choices: Use good quality parts

    It may be tempting to save on costs by choosing less expensive parts and fluids. However, you do get what you pay for and low-cost options may not perform well which can lead to engine inefficiencies. Also, poorer grade parts and fluids may leave cars vulnerable to damage or added maintenance which can end up costing you more in the long run.

  4. Stay hydrated

    Have fluids checked and changed such as engine oil and coolant, along with fluids for the transmission, brakes and power steering. Car fluids have different functions—they keep gears moving smoothly, flush out dirt or manage temperatures within the engine. Many of these fluids need to be changed regularly, but not all at the same time. Check your owner’s manual or speak to your automotive service provider about the different fluids found in your car and at what degree they should be changed.

  5. Regular pampering: Give it a wash, interior clean and de-clutter

    Whether or not it’s true that a car ‘picks up’ after a wash, giving it a good lather keeps it looking great (think resale value) and removes dirt which can damage or dull the paint. Cleaning and decluttering the interior also helps keep your ride feeling fresh and comfortable, and can also prevent the spread of germs.

  6. Find an automotive professional you trust

    Having an automotive expert whom you trust will not only help you keep your car in good shape, it’ll also help you save on costs and give you peace of mind. Find an automotive technician who knows where to look for issues, how to make a proper diagnosis, and will communicate honestly with you about what services need to be done and why.

    BCAA’s Red Seal Certified technicians conduct full diagnostic scans on all makes and models of vehicles and will go step by step to identify the exact cause of the issue. Book an appointment with one of our trusted experts at a BCAA Auto Service Centre near you, where Members get exclusive savings, a FREE car wash and a two-year warranty.