For many car owners, fixing their vehicle’s awful sound or that clunking sensation seems completely beyond them. But the average car owner could save thousands of dollars a year on car repair bills if they could understand that they can fix many of their car’s problems themselves. Mechanics won’t show you how easily certain tasks are done because they want you to come back for more repairs and to spend more money. Many car owners don’t even know how to open their own car’s hood, much less change the oil or the wiper fluid. Learning these basic skills can save you money in the long run and help you protect your car from further damage.
Changing the oil in your car may sound daunting, but to an experienced car owner or mechanic, this is one of the simpler tasks in basic car maintenance. Start by locating the oil dipstick in the car’s engine. Usually, this will be marked by an oil can icon. If you pull it out and look at the oil level, you will be able to tell if your car needs more or if the oil needs to be changed. If the oil level is below the hashmark on the dipstick, it’s time to add more. Simply get a funnel and pour the new oil into fill hole. Be sure it’s the right oil; the most common is 10W-30, but there are other weights.
William Gholson is an auto parts salesman based in San Antonio, Texas. He has learned the art of car maintenance and restoration and hopes to continue to help people in his community learn more about their cars and find ways to take better care of them.