This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #FRAMFresh #CollectiveBias
It’s hard to believe that I’ve made it this far in life without any idea of how some things work in my car. If a little light goes on, half the time I don’t even know what the light means. I’m a very capable girl, but there are some serious limitations when it comes to my car maintenance skills.
This fall I’ve decided to take things into my own hands, and learn how to do some simple maintenance tasks on my car that every person needs to know. Are you ready to get familiar with the basics? And yes, they are basics!
1. Washer Fluid
This is one of the symbols I can actually recognize when it lights up. When I am low or out of washer fluid, in the past I have told my hubby and asked him to fill it up for me! Finally, I asked for some help.
First of all pop the hood (in my husband’s car this release button was just below his door) and then grab your washer fluid. Luckily you can pick this stuff up at most major stores, and gas stations when you are in more of an emergency!
The cap in my husband’s car for washer fluid was blue, and the symbol matched the flashing icon inside the car.
So easy – just fill it up! Ok this was the most embarrassing one for me – I can’t believe how easy this was!
2. Tire Pressure
I never think about my tires. Some car’s do have an indicator if the tire pressure is low, and some do not. My SUV actually has photo that pops up on the navigation screen letting me know, but otherwise how would you ever know? My husband can tell on sight (I’m always surprised by this!), but otherwise he showed me how to use a tire pressure gauge.
Check the inside of your driver’s side door for what pressure your tires should actually be. I had no idea about this sticker at all! His tires should be at 30 PSI.
All I needed to do was unscrew the air cap on the tire and then press the gauge into the slot. It immediately told me he his tires were at 30 PSI (of course, because he’s really into his tire pressure!).
3. Checking your Oil Level
When that little oil light goes on, it normally means I need an oil change or at least an oil top up.
Instead of calling my husband, I learned how to check my oil level. I looked under the hood and pulled out the oil dipstick which looked like an orange tab.
I pulled it out, wiped the dipstick off, and then put it back into the tube. I removed it again, and checked the oil level. If it needed topping up, I could then remove the oil cap and add oil as needed.
4. Changing the Cabin Air Filter and Engine Filter
I actually didn’t even know that these needed to be changed! Wait, I actually didn’t even know that cars had them. You learn something every day I guess! Well they do exist, and they need to be changed!
Why do they need to be changed? A cabin air filter actually cleans the air entering your vehicles interior of all kinds of things like dust, dirt, and allergens. If the filter becomes clogged, fresh air will be blocked and it can even cause your air conditioning and defrost system to work less efficiently.
I headed over to Canadian Tire, and I purchased a FRAM Fresh Breeze® Cabin Air Filter, and a FRAM Engine Filter. FRAM recommends that you change your cabin air filter annually or ever 24,000km so we were overdue!
Again, I couldn’t believe how easy this actually was!
First I needed to find where the cabin air filter was stored – in my husband’s car it was behind the glove compartment.
There was a little face plate I needed to remove by pressing the sides of it.
Next I pulled out the old cabin air filter – wow it really needed to be changed!
Next up I had the new cabin air filter ready to insert. It had directions on the side which said which side was up.
All I needed to do was slot it in, add the face plate back in, and voila! I changed a cabin air filter. It took less than 10 minutes.
FRAM recommends changing your air filter and cabin air filter at the same time. We did that as well, but I had my husband handle that task. FRAM Fresh Breeze® Cabin air filters can remove up to 98% of dirt, dust and allergens passing through your vehicles air condition and heating ventilation system, and they are the only cabin air filter that uses the natural deodorizing qualities of Arm & Hammer® baking soda and activated carbon to absorb and eliminate odors. Check out other tips and tricks for changing out your filters here!
Well, are you ready for fall with some of these car maintenance tips? What car maintenance tip are you wanting to learn more about? I still have a few more tasks I don’t understand like how to change my windshield wipers. I let you know if I learn and I’ll do another tutorial!
Items in this post may have been provided to me for review, but all opinions are fabulously my own!
LOVE this post. I used to know nothing about my car at all, seriously nothing but since meeting my now husband I am learning all these little things and they aren’t that hard after all!
Seeing as my “check tire pressure” light has been on for an embarrassingly long time, this blog post was much needed!
Coming Up Roses
What a helpful & informative post! I need to get it together, as I don’t know anything about cars!
Damn girl you are a true queen! I feel like I sort of know, but then I am too lazy to do anything ha – having this knowledge is so important!
I can totally use this – thanks love!
get it girl!!! i need to learn for sure!
Sandy a la Mode
Great post!! Changing my filters is something I always forget to do haha.
I am so impressed by your ability to do your own car work! so cool!
Here’s The Skinny
I know nothing about cars so this post is so helpful girl! xo
Owning a car is a lot of work! You summarized all the essentials really well. I’m glad I live somewhere I can take public transit everywhere! Lol
My dad is super handy, so growing up I learned how to do a lot of things with my car (& all around the house) and now that I’m an adult I’m SO happy he taught me these things!
Emily | http://www.lifewithemilyblog.com
Um you’re a total girl boss and have inspired me to try some of this on my own next time!
Coffee Beans and Bobby Pins
The red fluid in your picture of an oil dipstick is likely transmission fluid. Do not add engine oil to your transmission.
Engine oil will be clear or amber if new, to brown or black if its been in there a while. Just because its brown or black does not mean it needs to be changed, it just means its doing part of its job and cleaning your engine internals. Follow owners manual recomendations for changing your oil.
That picture of the dipstick is of the engine oil. The fluid isn’t red, it’s that the stick itself is orange. Common on hondas
I love this! Way to switch it up and teach us something new. 🙂
Thank you! Most of it I had no idea about!
Great tips! I had no idea about the cabin air filters but after seeing before and after photos, I went out and bought one so I can change mine. #client
My husband is a mechanic. But I knew this stuff when I first started driving. I think these are all things everyone who drives should know. Surprisingly there are a lot of guys who don’t know this stuff either. Other important things are how to change fuses and light bulbs, how to change tires and boost batteries
Way to go, girlfriend!!! I definitely didn’t know all of these. I usually just ask my husband to fix whatever light is beeping at me! LOL. Thanks for reminding us that we can be totally capable of doing stuff on our cars! Also, I won’t look half as fabulous as you do while doing it, but a girl can dream! 😉 Love love loved this!
Read your Tire Specs, some tires should be higher than PSI, also weather can affect it…. talk to your tire expert or your dealership parts guy
The one thing you didn’t point out in your whole article is that not all vehicles look the same under the hood; or that different vehicles use different parts and you can’t just pick up any old thing from the store. However, all vehicles should have a detailed owners manual which explain which are the proper parts and fluids and how to change or install them. This is what you should actually follow when maintaining your vehicle. If you can’t find the owners manual you can usually get a copy online from the manufacturers website.
Time has advanced a lot. Now women are not weak and they have not left unseen as before. In fact, in some cases, women are more powerful than men. They juggle jobs, cooking, kids, sports and even their vehicles. No doubt, the car maintenance task is little bit more bullying for a girl, telling honestly, it is not as hard as she thinks. Here is provided with a car maintenance guide that every girl should follow to make sure her vehicle is in elite shape. But prior to that, a girl needs to go through her owner’s manual thoroughly, get familiar with his vehicle, overcome the fear of not doing maintenance alone, so that she can not only develop a mindset that she can fix the issue without taking the help of a professional but also do the right things timely by understanding the importance of car care.