How do I determine the gas mileage on my car?
The easiest way to determine the gas mileage on your car is to follow these steps – Go to the gas station and fill up your tank. Record the mileage, before pulling away from the pump. This number is called Mileage A. Drive until the tank is less than half full. Fill up the tank again, preferably at the same station previously used to stay consistent. Record the number of gallons it takes to fill up the tank. This number is called Gallons B. Now, record the mileage, just like before. Subtract Mileage A from Mileage B. This is the number of miles since your last fill-up. Divide the answer by the number of gallons required to fill up the tank (Gallons B). Voila!
What can I do to minimize my car repair costs?
Be pro-active in servicing your vehicle, in order to avoid little problems only getting worse over time. Taking your vehicle in regularly to have basic components, such as brake system, brake fluid, oil levels, and tire pressure checked, can minimize the costs of damage in the future.
What octane gas do you recommend for my car? Will higher octane gas save me fuel in the long run?
Use regular gasoline. Unless your vehicle requires premium gasoline, using high-octane gas is a waste of money, because it does not increase gas mileage or even performance. Using regular gas versus premium could save you hundreds of dollars per year. The owner’s manual that came with your vehicle will tell you which gas to use, or you can consult one of our trained technicians at 7 to 7 Auto Services.
How do I prepare for a long trip?
About two to four weeks before you are set to depart, have your car routinely serviced to check for major repairs and have them completed. Check coolant levels, tire inflation, presence of a spare tire, and for proper registration and owner’s manual in the glovebox. One week before you go, get any scheduled maintenance done, including an oil check and brake-fluid flush. Finally, check the air filter to avoid contaminated air during the trip, particularly in warm weather. And of course, fill up the gas!
When do I know to just buy a new car, rather than going through repairs?
This is a personal decision, but it is good to weigh the costs of constant repairs against the monthly costs of financing a new, more reliable vehicle. It may be better to use the current repair budget as a down payment for a new vehicle. You can also use a loan calculator to discover if a purchase is, for you, worthwhile. The safety of your vehicle is also a high priority. If it is an older model with outdated brake systems, cooling systems, and the like, it may be more worth-while to purchase a newer vehicle with newer parts, than to pay more for older, less safe or efficient components. 6. Do you maintain your services under a new car warranty? Answer: This will depend on the type of warranty you may have. It is good to consult the owner’s manual and any other documentation associated with the warranty to determine the limits to costs that are covered by a warranty, as well as the type of repairs that fall under the warranty.
My car is very old; is it safe to drive?
Some older cars with updated systems and components can still be safe to drive. It is important that proper brakes, airbag systems, and charging systems are in order. Have your vehicle serviced to determine if it is safe to drive. 8. How do I preserve the life of my brake pads? Answer: Brake pads are worn down through friction. The less often you have to use the brakes the longer they will stay thick enough for use. A clean braking system will also keep the brake pads working longer, removing any corrosive materials. Once brake pads are down to the metal, they have to go.
How do I save on gas?
Do not top off when filling your car's gas tank. Any additional gas is just going to be wasted. Stop pumping at the first indication that your tank is full, when the automatic nozzle clicks off. Tighten your gas cap to prevent the gas from evaporating through a leak. 147 million gallons of gas are lost each year through loose or faulty gas caps. So, be sure to tighten up that gas cap each time you fuel up your car! In Sunny San Diego, try to park in the shade. The hot sun zaps fuel from your gas tank through evaporation. Buying a good windshield shade can also block some of the sun and will keep heat away from the interior of your car.
Will I save on repair, if I park my car in my garage?
Yes! Parking your car in your garage will help your car to stay warm in winter and cool in summer. You won’t have to depend too much on your gas-guzzling air conditioner or defroster, when you drive. That is motivation enough to finally clear out that garage.
How often should I check my tire pressure?
At least once a month, you should check the air pressure in your tires. Buying your own digital gauge is a good idea. You can keep it in your glove box and check your tires, especially when it is cold outside, which reduces air pressure, and in the morning, after your car has been sitting overnight. Compare the pressure in your tires with the recommended pressure listed in your owner’s manual. Re-inflate your tires to meet these pressure values.
How often do I need to tune up my car?
Regular tune-ups can help boost gas mileage by about 4%, due to overall lack of efficiency. Worn-out spark plugs can reduce your car’s efficiency by up to 30%, as well. Our technicians at 7 to 7 Auto Services will check spark plugs for you.
When should I replace my air filters?
Check your filters at each oil change. It is recommended that you change your car and oil filters every three months or every 3,000 miles. Air filters get clogged with dirt, dust, and insects, making your engine work harder to just run properly. This reduces fuel efficiency. Replacing a filter can save you 15 cents a gallon! Check your owner’s manual for any special considerations.
How often do I need to change my oil? Do I need to use a special kind of oil for my car?
Consult your owner’s manual for this exact information, though at least once a year is recommended. Have your mechanic use the appropriate oil for your car, particularly motor oil with the words “energy conserving” on the API (American Petroleum Institute) performance label. This type of oil will lower the friction of all moving parts in your vehicle.
Can I skimp on my car maintenances?
No. You car’s performance depends on it being properly maintained. Follow the care guidelines in your owner’s manual to determine when and how your vehicle should be serviced. 7 to 7 Auto Services will be able to show you the recommended maintenance for your car, as well. Taking the necessary precautions and steps with the care of your vehicle will save you money and make sure that your vehicle is safe and efficient to drive.