Vehicle technology continues to improve all the time, and car engines of today are much more advanced than what your parents grew up with. With modern, computer-controlled engine management systems, the old days of popping the bonnet, grabbing a wrench and having a ‘she’ll be right’ moment are long gone.
Even though modern car engines are a bit more complex now, the list of simple things you can do to keep your car running right are largely the same as they were half a century ago.
But even though modern car engines are a bit more complex now, the list of simple things you can do to keep your car running right are largely the same as they were half a century ago.
Basic car safety checklist
Seatbelts — check tension and belt buckle operation
External Lights — replace bulbs if necessary
Handbrake — ensure that it can hold the vehicle on a slope
Windscreens & mirrors — check windscreens and mirrors for cracks
Windscreen wipers — check wear on wiper blades, replace if necessary
Horn — ensure this works
Fluids — check engine oil and engine coolant levels
Tyres — ensure tyres are at the correct pressures, check treadwear
Spare tyre & jack — ensure they are operational, check toolkit
Power steering fluid
Windscreen washer fluid
Clutch fluid (manual cars)
Treadwear and tread depth
Car jack and tools
Park & Fog lights
Other general things to check
Radiator hoses — check for leaks and cracking
Engine air filter — check that it is clean
Battery — look for corrosion around terminals
Fan belts — ensure none are loose or squeaking on start-up
Unusual engine noises — hard to start, ticking, hissing or clunking
Ensure that child seats are fitted correctly — Does your car have ISOFIX child seat anchors?