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Cars 101: What You Need To Know About Your Vehicle

Photo by Nina Mercado on Unsplash

Cars 101: What You Need To Know About Your Vehicle

We’ve been having a lot of fun with our Cars 101 series, but we’re bringing it back to basics this month. 


Cars are complex machines with many moving parts and systems that work together to keep them running smoothly. As a car owner, it's essential to have a basic understanding of your vehicle to keep it maintained and running well. 

Basic Maintenance

One of the most important things you can do as a car owner is to keep up with essential maintenance. This includes things like oil changes, tire rotations, and regular inspections of your brakes, battery, and other systems. By following the recommended maintenance schedule for your vehicle, you can help prevent breakdowns and keep your car running smoothly.


Your car uses a variety of fluids to operate, including oil, coolant, and brake fluid. It's essential to regularly check these fluids and top them off as needed. You should also have your fluids changed regularly, as your vehicle's manufacturer recommends.


Your tires are a critical component of your vehicle, and they need to be adequately maintained to ensure safe driving. This includes: 


  • Regular rotations 
  • Balancing
  • Alignments


Additionally, being cognizant and keeping them inflated to the recommended pressure should be a daily task, especially with New York's unpredictable weather extremes. You should also inspect your tires regularly for signs of wear or damage and replace them as needed.

Warning Lights

Modern vehicles are equipped with various warning lights that alert you to potential problems with your vehicle. Knowing what these lights mean and taking them seriously is important. Ignoring warning lights can lead to more severe problems down the road. Some of the most common warning lights include:


  • Check Engine Light - This light indicates an engine or emissions system issue. It can be caused by various problems, from minor issues like a loose gas cap to more severe issues like a malfunctioning oxygen sensor.
  • Battery Warning Light - This light indicates a problem with the car's charging system. It may be caused by a bad alternator, a weak battery, or a faulty voltage regulator.
  • Oil Pressure Warning Light - This light indicates that the car's oil pressure is low, which can be caused by low oil levels, a faulty oil pump, or a clogged oil filter. 


Call us if you’re ever weary about a warning light or unsure what to do next. At Service Plus, we’re happy to walk you through the following steps and let you know how soon you need to come in–some warning lights mean you can walk, but some warning lights mean you need to run!

Owner's Manual

Your owner's manual is a valuable resource that contains essential information about your vehicle, including recommended maintenance schedules, fluid specifications, and more. It's a good idea to read through your owner's manual when purchasing your car and refer to it regularly as needed.

Why Does Car Education Matter?

In conclusion, knowing the basics about your vehicle can help you keep it running smoothly and avoid costly repairs. By following the recommended maintenance schedule, checking your fluids and tires regularly, and paying attention to warning lights, you can keep your car in top condition and enjoy safe, reliable transportation.

Visit Us At Service Plus Automotive!

If you live in the Calcium, New York area, our auto mechanic shop can provide maintenance services that are designed to meet the needs of local drivers.Schedule an online appointment today with Service Plus Automotive. You can find us at 27721 State Route 283, Calcium, NY 13616 (just across from Fort Drum), and we are open Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. We look forward to hearing from you soon!


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