This blog is to help YOU understand basic car knowledge so that you’re more confident behind the wheel! Whether you are a female driver, first-time driver, or just a dude who needs some basic knowledge, I am sure there is an article for you! Today we’re going to talk about those 10 car things everyone should know. New driver or experienced, you definitely need to know these 10 things to Motor With Confidence.
10 Car Things Everyone Should Know
1. Car Fluids
Why is this number 1? Because it’s important! Without your car fluids, you would likely blow up your car (literally). Fluids like your oil, brake, power steering, transmission, differential, and even washer fluid are so important to a functioning car. Your motor oil we change every 5,000 miles or so, but do you know where to find it? How to refill it? Or what type you need? Luckily I have two articles on that you can find here and here. When it all comes down to it, your motor oil is what keeps your engine lubricated and your car running!
Brake fluid? Without it, you won’t have good working brakes! While you rarely change or have to check your brake fluid, you should know how it works and where to find the reservoir in your car just in case something happens! Go read Brake Fluid 101 for more information on that. Similar to your brake fluid, the power steering and differential fluids don’t have to be checked and changed often, but you should still know more about them! The power steering fluid helps with smooth steering. Your differential fluid lubricates all the bearing and gears that turn your gearbox keeping your vehicle running smooth & cold. Need more? Go read this article and this article.
While we haven’t done an article specifically on washer fluid, it is still pretty important to every day driving. Without washer fluid, you wouldn’t be able to wash your windshield. Which, might not be hugely important, but it helps keep snow off your windshield which is important to help you see! Our article on washer fluids is coming out soon so stay tuned!
2. Tire Tread & Alignment
By now, you probably realized how obsessed I am with tires. They are crucial to your safety and helping your car move smoothly! Your tire tread can be measured by a quarter (click here for more) and your alignment can be spotted by your eyes (click here for more).
3. Reading A Dipstick
Every car has a dipstick to help measure how much motor oil is still in your engine. Therefore, knowing how to ready one is very important & very simple! I’ll do a video on this later, but for now, just remember these three areas. The first is the bottom of the dipstick. If you pull it out and there is a hint of motor oil at the bottom, you are VERY low! You’ll need to add more. The second area is usually grated and this is the “normal” range. Anywhere here is fine, but monitor because you will soon need more oil. The “upper” area means your oil is full!
4. Jacking Up Your Car
In case you ever need to, knowing how to jack your car is important. Done wrong, you can smash the jack stands into the frame of your car which you definitely don’t want! In most cars, there is a divot or area on the frame you can lift from, but I always recommend looking in your owners manual to find the exact location!
5. Changing A Tire
Going hand in hand with the above line, everyone should know how to change their tire! That doesn’t mean you always have to, but you should practice in case you are stranded or out late at night with a blown tire. We have a YouTube video showing you how!
6. Jumping A Dead Battery
We just launched our heat-resistant stickers walking you through how to jump your car battery that you can place under your hood! They will soon be on the website to purchase so you’ll definitely want to grab some!! In the meantime, here’s a video showing you how to use the sticker 🙂
7. Where Your Spare Tire Is
Almost forgot! When you change your tire, you’ll have to put a spare on so make sure you know where your spare tire and all the jack pieces are in your vehicle since every newer car should have one!
8. Tire Pressure
Again with the tires…each tire has a specific PSI they need in order to perform properly. Too low, and you could go flat. Too high and you’ll be having a bumpy ride! Make sure you know what your tire pressure is and how to check each tire!
9. Changing Your Wiper Blades
Your wiper blades don’t last forever! Save those extra bucks taking it to a dealer to change, and learn how to change your own wiper blades with the help of our video! It’s as simple as click, pull, and release.
10. Understanding Your Engine
Lastly, know your engine. One of our most popular articles called Car Basics 101 walks you through how an engine runs and what makes it run. I recommend reading it over so you have a knowledge of what makes your car tick!
You might have a lot of reading to do, but I encourage you to spend one raining day going through the articles highlighted above. They will truly help you understand your vehicle better which overall will help you Motor With Confidence!