Best Practices for Daily Vehicle Maintenance


One of the most important things you can do to keep your car in good working order is follow a set of simple maintenance tips. These tips should be followed every time you take your vehicle on the road, regardless of whether it’s an old junker or a brand new luxury sedan. While there are some basic maintenance tasks that only require a few minutes of your time each month and cost very little money, other jobs are more involved and may require taking your vehicle into a mechanic for repairs.

Keep your tires properly inflated.

The proper tire pressure is key to a smooth ride and better gas mileage. You should check your vehicle’s tire pressure regularly, especially if you live in an area where temperatures fluctuate significantly throughout the year.

Tires should be checked when they are cold (i.e., before driving). This means that you shouldn’t check them after driving for a while or even idling at a stoplight–you’ll get an inaccurate reading because heat has expanded the air inside the tires and decreased their overall volume, causing less pressure to be exerted on each square inch of tread surface area than would be indicated by ambient temperature alone.[1]

The recommended inflation levels vary depending on what type of vehicle you drive (see below), but they typically range between 30-35 PSI in front tires and 35-40 PSI in rear ones.[2] If this information isn’t listed on your car’s owner manual or somewhere else easy to find, don’t worry–there are other ways!

Inspect the air filter at least once a month and replace it as needed.

As you’re driving, check the air filter at least once a month. If it’s dirty and clogged with debris, then it’s time to replace it with a new one.

Look for signs of wear and tear on your vehicle’s air filter: do you see cracks in its surface? Is there anything blocking its flow (like leaves or bugs)? Replace the air filter as needed, especially before long trips where dust could be an issue for your engine.

Have the vehicle inspected regularly.

  • Have the vehicle inspected regularly.
  • A good rule of thumb is to get your car inspected once a year or every 20,000 miles, whichever comes first. Inspections can be performed by a mechanic or at an auto shop, but if there are any problems with your vehicle that need immediate attention (such as leaking oil), make sure you bring it in right away so that they can be addressed before they become more serious issues.
  • When getting a vehicle inspection done, look for:
  • Oil leaks around the engine block and transmission case; if there are any leaks detected during an inspection like this one, have them repaired immediately because these leaks could lead to more serious engine damage down the road!

Use common sense with the weather.

You can’t control the weather, but you can do your best to protect your car from it. When the temperature drops below freezing or rises above 100 degrees F, don’t leave your vehicle parked in the sun or run it until its engine reaches operating temperature. The extreme heat and cold damage a car’s interior components if they’re left exposed for too long–and that damage could cost you thousands of dollars down the road.

As for keeping windows closed while driving: If you live in an area with high humidity and/or frequent rainstorms (like me), then there are few things more annoying than being stuck in traffic with fogged-up windows that won’t roll down no matter how hard you try! If this happens often enough, though, it could cause permanent damage to power windows–so just avoid having them open at all costs!

Watch out for unusual sounds, smells or performance issues.

  • Listen for unusual sounds.
  • Listen for unusual smells.
  • Watch out for performance issues, such as engine roughness or lack of power when accelerating, or excessive brake noise or pedal vibration when braking.

Keep gas in a safe place.

  • Keep gas in a safe place.
  • Don’t leave gas cans in the sun or rain. Gasoline is highly flammable, so it’s important to keep it away from sources of heat, like direct sunlight and open flames.
  • Don’t leave gas cans where they can be knocked over by people or vehicles, or stolen by opportunistic thieves who are looking for an easy way to make some quick cash on Craigslist or eBay.

Follow these basic maintenance tips to keep your car in good working order.

  • Your car is your second home, and it’s important to keep it clean and safe.
  • If you don’t take care of your vehicle, it will be harder–and more expensive–to keep running smoothly.
  • It’s also essential that you stay safe while driving. You could get into an accident if you don’t follow these basic maintenance tips!


Car maintenance is a lot easier than it used to be. With the advent of computerized systems and sensors, you can do most of your routine checks yourself instead of relying on a mechanic or gas station employee. Just make sure that when you do need help from someone else, they know what they’re doing!