Check if you are guilty of the following sin that has prematurely retired your car:
Do you use the Parking Brake optimally?
Use the Parking Brake. Use it when you park on an incline, or even on fairly steady ground. Otherwise, it puts all of the stress of the car on your transmission. When you use the parking brake you are actually locking up the non-drive wheels and the drive wheels. This means that you are safely taking the stress off the transmission. A little pin called the parking pawl inside that transmission would get the brunt of all the burden of your car while holding it steady. It'll take away the happy years off your car's transmission. Before you start driving, disengage the Parking Brake and your car will thank you for the ease you are allowing it to work with.
What Makes a Car Wear Out Fast?
Do you pull out of a parking space and shift into drive while the car is still coasting backwards?
If you habitually do this, you keep adding months of wear to your transmission in a matter of seconds. Let us see how. Inside your transmission is a complex set of gears. When you shift without stopping, these gears may have to work as brakes. The result is, you are putting unnecessary stress on the transmission and this will damage the drive shafts that are only responsible for sending power to the wheels. Sooner or later, your car will have a sloppy suspension handling and a worn out transmission.
Do not take Your Car for Granted
Even if you are in a rush, come to a complete stop before shifting.
If you are driving down a steep incline or a hill that seems to be never ending, avoid riding the brakes all the time. Do not continuously brake down a steep incline. Braking is not the safest way to maneuver down a hill. And if the path down the hill is very long, riding on the brake quickly heats up the brake pads and totally wears out the brake pads. Brake pads wear out faster when they are heated up. Try using neutral and brakes, the 1st gear and no brakes or alternate between braking and letting it off.
Give Your Car a Breather
You need to change the oil every 5,000 miles. Do not wait until the oil light flashes for a change of oil. By the time the oil light comes on, the oil inside your engine would have turned into an ugly and slick tar and is of no use to your engine. If you are too busy to attend the oil change, it is okay for a while, but if you can frequently change oil it can actually double the life of your car while increasing its performance
Do Not Run the Engine Parts of Your Car Down the Drain
How do you wash the engine?
Engines get grimy but if you are thinking of pressure washing to get rid of it, please forget it. Pressure washing is dangerous for an engine especially if the pressure washer is pointed at vulnerable parts. A modern engine is a complex device with sensitive parts like sensors, wiring harnesses and components that are not made to take high pressure water jets. A high powered jet of water is bound to dislodge the delicate components off their rubber seals and hoses. You can as well use a regular garden hose which may prove gentler than high pressure jets.
Do Not Start your Car with a Bang
Do you start your car with a big bang?
Do not start your car with all accessories - the radio, wipers and climate control on. Maximum wear and tear occurs when the engine comes on with all these accessories at full swing. Start only the engine, not the accessories. Check and switch off all these accessories before starting your car. By doing so, you are reducing the amount of work you are loading onto the engine.
Give Your Car Engine Time to Warm Up to You
Do you keep revving the engine in winter?
Revving engine in winter doesn't help 'warm up' a car, but only makes its engine hotter. Revving your engine in winter causes sudden and extreme temperature changes. When you start your car, oil has to work its way through the system. If you rev the engine, it would lead to famishing the engine and it has to work without any oil supply. Without any oil and lubricant the engine would heat up. Actually, the right way to warm an engine is, let the car idle for about half a minute or so.
Listen to Your Car
Is the music from the system drowning the sounds from your car?
Listen to your car. Every sound your car makes is a cry for help. If you pay attention, you can actually understand what it needs. Squeaking of brakes means they need new pads. If you ignore it you'll soon hear scraping metal which means that it needs new rotors. If you ignore this too, you'll lose the brakes completely and you are in a big trouble. So, listen carefully to what you car is saying. Drive your car without the music system blaring on.
Do Not Famish Your Car
Do you drive your car to 'Empty tank'?
You may get different opinions on how long you can keep driving your car on E. You must have been advised to run the car as long as possible, on E though some mechanics refute the wisdom of it. Running down to E leads to formation of sediment in the tank that gets sucked into the system and foul fuel injectors. Besides, life of the fuel pump gets drastically reduced since there is not enough fuel in the tank to cool it.
Consult the owner's manual if your car can drive another 60 miles plus, after it hits Empty. This extra mileage on the Empty is generally referred to as a 'buffer zone'. US cars have the largest 'buffer zone'. German cars have a much smaller 'buffer zone'.
Keep the interiors of your car neat and clean. Drive carefully and avoid diversions while driving.
You treat your car well, it treats you back even better.