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We all know the basics to keeping our car running such as checking oil levels, tire pressure and driving carefully. However, there are some things that aren’t checked during car servicing. If you really want to look after your car and pay very close attention to the small details, follow these somewhat unknown tips.

Break-in

Speed

Much like a new shoe, cars need to be broken-in. During this break-in period, it’s important not to speed excessively; generally speaking 88kph (kilometres per hour) is the limit. However the car’s manufacturer may have a different guideline for you to follow, so stick to that. Usually this speed limit only applies for the first 1,600km.

Acceleration

In the early stages of your car’s life, only use medium acceleration, preferably keeping below 3,000rpm. This can prolong the life of your engine and even eliminate the need to bring your car to a pre-nct testing centre, as you will be sure to pass with flying colours.

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Fuel

Usually the only thing people need to remember about fuel is whether their car takes petrol or diesel. However, here are a couple of good tips regarding fuel.

Petrol Stations

Only go to well known petrol stations such as Maxol, Texaco etc. as smaller, independent petrol stations may not treat their fuel properly, thus causing damage to your car. Smaller stations may not have pump filters to get rid of dirt, or they may even water down the petrol to get more out of it.

The Tanker

If there is a fuel tanker filling up the petrol tanks, your best bet is to go elsewhere. You may think ‘Oh, but surely that fuel will be freshest?’ That is true; however when filling the tanks, dirt and sediment can be stirred up from the bottom and can damage your car. Wait a day for it to settle down before going back. Even this can lessen the need for a car servicing and inevitably save you some money.

Keys

A little known fact is that a hanging your car key on a heavy keychain does your ignition no good. As you drive along, with those dozens of keys bouncing and applying weight and pressure to your ignition, it can eventually lead to ignition switch failure.

Interior

Protect the interior of your car from sunlight by investing in shades for your car. Not only do these prevent fading of your seats and dashboard, but they also help to keep your car cool when parked in the sun.

Weather-stripping

Make sure that the weather-stripping along your windows and doors is tightly sealed and not allowing any rain to get in. Loose weather-stripping can cause dampness and mould and, let’s face it, who wants to deal with that? The simple solution is to replace any worn or torn weather-stripping, available from any motor shops in a large variety so you’re sure to find some that matches the original.

Treat Scrapes

If your car scraped or scratched, be sure to treat these immediately, as giving it time will allow rust to form.

If you follow these top tips, even a car servicing garage will be impressed and may even ask you for advice!

Written by Alex Girardi, who recommends Atlas Tyres and Auto Centres for cheap car servicing.