Often, good driving for your car is also ideal for your own health. Below are a few tips on avoiding these bad habits so your car works better and lasts longer.
Avoid Really Slow Acceleration
This one is primarily about fuel economy, but it may also be a matter of personal safety – It's silly accelerate more slowly than traffic. Some people have been taught not to push the pedal to the metal, and the general principle is a good one. But getting going at very low speeds stops your car from working as intended and can put wear on the transmission and engine. The best idea is to drive at about the same speed as the drivers around you.
Don't Empty the Tank
Know about two ways that emptying your auto of diesel or regular gas or keeping the tank low is harmful. Sediment in gas sinks to the bottom of your gas tank, so when the level is low your car has to push the grit through the engine. This might cause a clog and will also require your engine to work harder than usual. Also, gas or diesel in the tank actually helps cool the part that pumps fuel, making it more efficient. If you have too little, your fuel pump could get hot and wear out easily.
Don't Sit and Idle or Rev
If you've read our blog, you know what our mechanics say about idling. It's also not great to rev your engine while stopped, especially if you're doing so with a cold engine. If you do, oil and fluids won't circulate properly and the catalytic converter won't start working. Going straight from cold to hot isn't good either.
Don't Drive Aggressively
You're not Vin Diesel from “Fast and Furious.” Of course this behavior is unsafe. But beyond that, peeling out at lights and slamming on the brakes is difficult on your transmission, engine and brakes. It's clear why you want to show off a fast auto, but we think that trying to show off too much will be destructive down the road.
Don't Shift Improperly
Shifting is a big deal. We'll just go over a few of the ways that shifting behavior can affect your transmission. Don't ever move to park or reverse while your car is moving. Also, don't shift into park and head off without putting on the parking brake. If you do, all the weight of your truck or car will rest against the transmission. For manual shifters, be careful to remove your foot from the clutch when you aren't shifting. These easy habits could save you thousands of dollars.
Don't Drive Too Fast
Driving as fast as possible on the freeway can be thrilling. But realize that driving this way can wreck the engine, and the car. Our automobile experts at Christian Brothers in Katy believe that most autos perform best at between 40 and 60 mph. If you drive at higher speeds, you will use more gas mile by mile and your transmission will wear out. Also, when you go so fast it means extra stress on all the small moving parts of your engine, and that can cause you to need early repairs. In the end, driving at posted speed limits is a great way to show that you love your vehicle.
Call us for an Engine Check
Drive well and keep your car or truck clean inside and out. You should also be careful to check the tires, oil and lights often. Then, at least every 5,000 miles, bring your auto in to your Katy Christian Brothers repair shop for a professional checkup.