TIP! Check your radiator often. Start your car, wait a few minutes and shut it off so you can safely inspect the radiator.

If you drive every day, you need to know some basic things about auto repair. Still, most owners don’t know anything about their vehicle. Luckily, the piece below includes excellent information to help keep your car in great repair.

TIP! You don’t always need a mechanic when your car is having problems. You can easily learn to perform small repairs yourself.

Ask for referrals to find a great mechanic. Ask the people you know for their recommendations. You can learn about the quality of work, the pricing and if they were satisfied with the service. They can let you know if they had a good experience and whether or not the mechanic was trustworthy and honest.

TIP! Keep good records for your car’s history. A good place to keep these records in the glove box, so you can produce them on demand when talking to a mechanic.

Once a repair shop has finished with your car, go on a quick spin to make sure things are working properly. Lots of people skip this practice and they might end up not solving the issue they initially came in for.

TIP! Whenever you have your vehicle repaired, ensure you maintain an adequate record, regardless of the reason why you are having repairs. Future problems can be easily solved when auto technicians have access to past records.

Are your headlights clean? The lights can become coated with road grease and dirt, which will prevent the maximum amount of light from shining. Use glass cleaner to wash them thoroughly.

TIP! Before paying an auto repair shop for work done to your car, take it for a test drive to see if it is working properly. If you do not do this, you may have the same issue when you get home.

Check to see that your technician knows what he is doing. If they beat around the bush and act shifty, they may not be the one you want to work with. It is important that you trust the person that is repairing your vehicle, and if you don’t, then go somewhere else.

TIP! Be careful of mechanics that do unnecessary repairs to the car. All reputable mechanics will notify you before doing any repairs and will inform you of any parts that could require repairs in the immediate future.

Keep a spare tire and a jack with you all the time. Many newer cars already have them. There is nothing worse than being stranded far from home and having to get an expensive tow. It’s cheaper to do on your own.

TIP! Consider using OEM parts. These are the manufacturer’s original parts.

See if any of your friends or family members have had a positive experience at a particular auto shop. Your loved ones might have some good recommendations for you to check out. But make sure that you still do your research on anyone they mention. Checking out online customer reviews for a given garage is a must, and it doesn’t take long at all.

TIP! Have you noticed that your headlights aren’t shining very brightly? If so, ensure you are cleaning them regularly. Sometimes the road can create a greasy residue on the headlight.

Look at flashing lights on your dashboard and learn what each one signifies. These lights give you a good indication of when your vehicle needs some maintenance. Do not ignore them, as this can put your safety in danger.

TIP! Keep your car washed during the winter. While it may seem pointless, winter is the most damaging time for your car.

Do not start working on DIY projects unless you are sure of yourself. Don’t ever do repairs alone. Put your money towards purchasing good tools that will last. This is particularly important for tools that you use to change your tires. A good quality jack is very important, particularly since you will be under the vehicle. That’s why it’s smart to use a good hydraulic floor jack with approved jack stands.

TIP! Don’t let a mechanic convince you that an engine flush is a common maintenance procedure. Flushing an engine can be expensive and is only needed in cases where the engine is in bad shape.

Check tire pressure each time you fill your tank. Look over your tires to be sure nothing has become embedded in them. If you notice any problems with your tires, have them checked by a professional. You should not risk driving with less-than-perfect tires.

TIP! Do not believe claims that any auto part will last for a lifetime. Often, that’s their way of getting more money out of you.

When you own a car, you need to make sure that it is always in good working order. It is not always common knowledge about how to attend to basic car repairs, or how to find a great mechanic. Use the tips presented in this article and do more research on the specific issues you are encountering.