Step 5, Part 1: The Road Ahead

Page 13 of 17

Kick the Tires

Overhead view of repair team diagnosing and repairing a red sports car Remember the first rule of car buying: your car will depreciate in value over time.

This means hanging on to your car’s value is a process that will continue long after you drive off the lot. Follow these guidelines for maintaining your vehicle.

Read the Owner’s Manual

Everyone says it, but few actually do it. Reading the owner’s manual may save you lots of money down the road. For example, think you need an oil change every 3,000 miles? The owner’s manual may think differently. Many newer engines don’t require oil changes as frequently as we are accustomed. Reading the owner’s manual will give you insight on not just keeping your car running, but keeping it in mint condition.

Drive Safely

Not only will avoiding traffic tickets and accidents save you money on your insurance, but it will also keep your car safe and running. Pull over to make cellphone calls or to eat, drive defensively and obey traffic laws.

Get it Fixed

If you’re in an accident, even just a fender bender, be sure to repair the vehicle immediately. Putting off minor repairs can cause rust build-up and wear down your car’s defenses.

Keep up with Regular Check-ups

Check-up, fill up and tune up. Regular maintenance is the best way to keep your car running efficiently. Check your owner’s manual to see how often you should take your car in for maintenance, regulate your tire pressure frequently and fill your fluid tanks as needed.

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