We’ll get to the photos in a minute. First, though…

10 ways to NOT ruin your car or truck:

1. Running Your Car Down to Empty

There is some disagreement about this, but many experts say that if your car gets down below E to where it’s practically empty, the sediment in your tank will get sucked into the fuel system and will gradually clog your fuel filter and/or injectors. Even if that’s not true, running down to E often does mean that you cut into the lifespan of the fuel pump, since the fuel actually cools the pump.

2. Not Coming to a Complete Stop Before Shifting between Drive and Reverse

Have you ever backed out of a parking space and shifted from reverse into drive while the car is still coasting backwards? You’ve just added more wear to your transmission in seconds than you usually add in days or weeks. Inside your transmission is a complex set of gears, and when you shift without stopping, you’re asking those gears to work as brakes, which puts an unusual amount of stress on them. You can also cause more wear to your drive shaft connections, the things that send power to the wheels, by shifting that way. After a while, this may lead to worn out axles or u-joints, and a worn-out transmission.

3. Ignoring Your Car’s Sounds

If you pay attention, your car can often tell you exactly what needs fixing. For example, those squealing brakes mean you need new brake pads, and if you ignore that sound, eventually you’ll hear scraping metal, which means you need new rotors. Listen to your car, and get odd sounds checked by someone you trust before things get worse. Check Yelp reviews of repair shops. InSite OilChange can sometimes help with this sort of thing, too.

NOTE: A little bit of squeaking now and then from brakes may not mean they’re worn out. When the built-in wear indicators start screeching (almost like fingernails on a chalkboard) it’s definitely time for new pads. If you’re not sure, ask us to check your brakes when we’re there for an oil change, or we can come out just to check the brakes for a small fee.

4. Forgetting to Change the Oil

You need to get an oil change done every 5,000 miles (most vehicles). There are claims that say you can go longer, but frequent oil changes are probably the one most important way to make your car’s engine last longer.

Any mechanic would agree with this, and InSite OilChange makes it EASY because we come to your location and carefully change the oil right there at your work or home.

5. Letting the Interior Go

Dirty materials do not last as long as clean ones, be they seat fabrics, leather, carpeting or whatever. Also, as dirt and stains accumulate, they get harder to remove, so some may never come out. Just clean it up once in a while or have it done at a car wash, and try not to spill those coffees and cokes.

6. Not Using the Parking Brake

When you park on even a slight incline without using the parking brake, you’re putting all of the weight of the car on your transmission. The only thing inside that transmission holding your car steady is a thing called a parking pawl. By using the parking brake, you lock up the non-drive wheels as well as the drive wheels and take the stress off of the transmission. It may add to the lifespan to your car’s transmission. Just remember to disengage the brake before you start driving again!!!

7. High-Pressure Washing the Engine

A clean engine is nice. But if you spray a high powered jet of water around rubber seals and hoses and electrical parts, eventually you’re bound to dislodge something important. A modern engine is a complex thing with all kinds of sensors and electronic components, and it’s no place for a jet of high pressure water. A regular garden hose with some biodegradable engine cleaner is okay if you want to wash it down, but we recommend that you avoid the high pressure.

8. Revving Your Car at Start-up

When you start the car, the oil hasn’t yet worked its way up through the system, so the engine is working without much lubricant. Often, more wear happens at start-up than at most other times. The right way to do it is just let the car sit and idle for about 30 seconds, or as close to that amount of time as you can.

Now regarding those photos up top:

9. Putting Hello Kitty all over it is one way to ruin your car. Sorry, just our opinion!

10. Doin’ the “Donk” thing – again, just our opinion!




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